ALBANY (Scrap Monster): Based on the most recent Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) data, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported today that the U.S. steel import permit applications for the month of May this year totaled 3,598,000 net tons (NT) of steel. The import permits tons recorded 2.2% increase when compared with 3,519,000 permit tons recorded in April. Also, the import permits are up significantly by 7.4% when compared with the April final imports total of 3,351,000 net tons.
The import permit tonnage of finished steel totaled 2,593,000 net tons during May 2017, modestly higher by 2.6% when matched with the final imports total of 2,528,000 net tons in April this year.
Key finished steel products with a significant increase in import permits during May this year when compared to April final import are standard rail (up 119%), reinforcing bars (up 67%), cut lengths plates (up 40%), plates in coils (up 30%), wire rods (up 28%), tin plate (up 25%), standard pipe (up 16%) and line pipe (up 12%).
In May, the largest number of import permit applications were for South Korea (308,000 NT, down 4% from April final), Turkey (190,000 NT, up 2%), Germany (149,000 NT, up 33%), Japan (146,000 NT, up 2%) and Taiwan (93,000 NT, down 22%).
The steel products which recorded significant year-to-date (YTD) increases when compared with the corresponding five-month period in 2016 were oil country goods (up 233%), cold rolled sheets (up 37%), sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 36%), standard pipe (up 33%), mechanical tubing (up 29%), sheets and strip hot dipped galvanized (up 25%), hot rolled bars (up 21%), line pipe (up 21%), tin plate (up 19%) and wire rods (up 13%).
For first five months of 2017, the largest overseas suppliers of finished steel to the US were South Korea (1,518,000 NT, down 5% from the same period in 2016), Turkey (1,178,000 NT, up 18%) and Japan (668,000 NT, down 6%).
Meantime, the weekly statistics released by the steel body indicates that raw steel production by the country declined marginally by 0.2% during the week ending on June 3rd, 2017.
The total domestic raw steel output during the week ending June 3rd was 1,749,000 net tons. The AISI data indicates that the US raw steel production has dropped slightly by 0.2% during the week. This is in comparison with the previous week (ie., the week ended May 27th) production figures of 1,753,000 net tons. However, the weekly production represents modest rise of 0.4% in comparison with production of 1,742,000 net tons during same week the previous year.
The capability utilization rate of US steel makers was 75.0% during the week ended June 3, 2017. The capacity utilization rate has reduced marginally when compared with 75.2% during the previous week (ie., the week ending May 27th). On the other hand, capacity utilization rate was up when compared with the rate of 74.5% during same week the previous year.
The crude steel production by various districts during the week was as follows:- North East (215,000 NT), Great Lakes (621,000 NT), Midwest (171,000 NT), Southern (665,000 NT) and Western (77,000 NT).
The year-to-date crude steel output through June 3, 2017 totaled 38,167,000 net tons, up by nearly 2.8% when matched with the output of 37,117,000 net tons during the same period last year. The capacity utilization rate during the period was up considerably from 72.1% a year before to 74.4% during the period ended June 3rd this year.