SMU Data and Models

Worldsteel: Global Steel Output Falls Further in November

Written by David Schollaert

Global crude steel production was estimated at 139.1 million metric tons in November, as steelmakers around the world cut output by 4.2 million metric tons vs. the same year-ago period, the World Steel Association (worldsteel) reported.

Last month’s estimated production was also down sequentially, declining 5.6%, or 8.2 million metric tons, from October’s total crude steel output.

After reaching an all-time high of 174.4 million metric tons in May 2021, global steel output has varied. The lack of consistency has been heavily determined by Chinese production. After declining for 11 straight months through February, driven primarily by Chinese cutbacks, global output then rose from March through May, led again by China.

Since then, production around the world has fluctuated. November’s total global output fell, and though the decline was widespread, it was still led by China. Global output has now dipped repeatedly over the past two months.

Last month, nine of the top 10 steel-producing nations saw production decline vs. October.

When compared to the same year-ago period, results were similar, only three out of 10 saw production totals increase — China, India, and Iran were the exceptions. When compared to the pre-pandemic period of October 2019, global crude steel production was down 5.7%, or 8.5 million metric tons, last month.

China’s steel production in November totaled an estimated 74.5 million metric tons, down 5.3 million metric tons (-6.6%) MoM, but up 5.2 million metric tons (+7.5%) from the same year-ago period. Worldwide steel production, ex-China, totaled 64.6 million metric tons last month, down 9.4 million metric tons (-12.7%) compared to November 2021. Output was also 4.3% MoM in November, or 2.9 million metric tons fewer.

GCSP Nov22

Chinese steel output accounted for 53.6% of worldwide production in November, down 0.6 percentage points vs. October.

As noted, nine out of the top 10 global steel-producing countries saw production decline from October to November. Iran was the sole nation not to report a MoM decline. Iran’s output was unchanged last month when compared to October at 2.9 million metric tons.

The US saw production decrease by 300,000 metric tons, or -4.5% last month.

By David Schollaert,

David Schollaert

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