Steel Blog

Chinese steel trade data was recently released for the month of August 2017, providing updated data on iron ore imports, scrap imports, and flat rolled imports and exports. Chinese imports of iron ore in August were 88,660,000 metric tons, an increase of 2.8 percent from the previous month and an increase of 1.1 percent from August 2016. Total iron ore imports for the first eight months of 2017 are at 713,980,000 metric tons.



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Spot iron ore pricing dropped 7.4 percent within the past 24 hours with 62% Fe iron ore fines hitting $63 per dry metric ton (dmt). Iron ore has dropped $15.80/dmt over the past month. On Aug. 22, 62% Fe fines were trading at $78.8/dmt, according to The Steel Index.



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The U.S. Department of Commerce announced its affirmative preliminary determinations in the countervailing duty investigations of imports of cold-drawn mechanical tubing from China and India. Commerce determined exporters of cold-drawn mechanical tubing from China and India received countervailable subsidies of 33.31 to 35.69 percent, and 3.04 percent and 8.09 percent, respectively.



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Preliminary CVD Duties on Chinese Tool Chests

Tuesday, 12 September 2017 14:31

The U.S. Commerce Department today announced an affirmative preliminary determination in the countervailing duty investigation on exports of metal tool chests and cabinets from China. Commerce calculated preliminary subsidy rates ranging from 17.32 percent to 32.07 percent.

Preliminary CVD Duties on Chinese Tool Chests

Tuesday, 12 September 2017 10:52

The U.S. Commerce Department today announced an affirmative preliminary determination in the countervailing duty investigation on exports of metal tool chests and cabinets from China. Commerce calculated preliminary subsidy rates ranging from 17.32 percent to 32.07 percent.



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Steel Summit: Free and Fair Trade

Tuesday, 05 September 2017 16:52

Steel Market Update asked four panelists at the 2018 Steel Summit to define free and fair trade and offer some solutions to what most in the industry consider unfairly traded steel imports.

Philip Bell, president of the Steel Manufacturers Association representing North American EAF steel producers, said there are five components of free and fair trade. Free and fair trade is rules-based and grounded in free market principles; involves open markets that make people want to trade with each other; opposes state ownership and market-distorting subsidies; recognizes the right to use, when necessary, trade remedies and laws to address illegal and unfair trade practices; and includes an inherent right for a country to defend its trade laws.

"To be angry at the mills for wanting the government to enforce its laws," said Bell, "is like the fire department responding to a five-alarm blaze and being upset with the people who called 911. The mills have a right to do this."



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Will Chinese Really Cut Production This Time?

Tuesday, 05 September 2017 12:53

The market’s obsessive speculation over Section 232 and possible new tariffs on steel imports has caused many to miss the big story, said Timna Tanners, research analyst for Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “Stop worrying about what’s happening in Washington and pay more attention to what’s happening in China,” she told the sellout crowd at Steel Market Update’s Steel Summit Conference last week in Atlanta. “The Chinese are beginning to display some supply discipline that eclipses anything we could talk about in the U.S.”



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The Commerce Department has extended the deadline for determinations in the anti-circumvention investigation of corrosion-resistant steel from China to Feb. 15, 2018.

On Nov. 14, 2016, the anti-circumvention case was initiated on CORE steel products from the People's Republic of China in response to a request from steel companies ArcelorMittal USA, Nucor, U.S. Steel, AK Steel, Steel Dynamics, Inc., and California Steel Industries.



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U.S. Steel's Section 337 allegations of trans-shipment of Chinese steel products are being challenged by seven Chinese steel mills.

U.S. Steel alleges that respondents in the case are misrepresenting country of origin in steel shipments in order to elude antidumping and countervailing duties. Baosteel Group, HeSteel Group, Masteel Group, Shougang Steel Group, Shagang Steel Group, WISCO Steel Group and Ansteel Group are challenging that claim, asserting that U.S. Steel has not provided sufficient evidence to support its allegations.



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Zinc Prices at 10-Year High

Monday, 21 August 2017 11:12

Zinc prices hit a 10-year high this past week, climbing to $3,000 per metric ton ($1.36 per pound) on the London Metal Exchange on Wednesday. By Monday, zinc had risen to $1.41 per pound. Strong global demand and shrinking inventory boosted prices, as well as a shortage of Chinese zinc.

The primary use of zinc is for the production of coated steels such as galvanized and Galvalume. A surge in zinc prices could have an impact on the coating extras used by steel mills across the world. Higher zinc prices means higher costs to apply zinc to steel.

Environmental inspections have shut down 60 percent of zinc mines in China for one month, further reducing constrained supply caused by capacity reductions at Swiss-based miner Glencore. Glencore idled one-third of its zinc capacity in October 2015. Nearly 500,000 metric tons of zinc were removed from the market, pushing prices up by more than 90 percent.

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