Steel, Aluminum Shipments Rise at Double-Digit Rates
March shipments of both steel and aluminum products from service centers in the United States and Canada rose at double-digit rates from year-ago volume, according to the latest Metals Activity Report from the Metals Service Center Institute, Rolling Meadows, Ill. Inventories of both metals in both nations rose slightly.
Shipments of steel products from U.S. service centers in March totaled 3.21 million tons, a 24.0 percent increase from a year ago. First-quarter steel shipments from U.S. service centers rose 11.2 percent above first-quarter 2009 shipments, to 8.45 million tons.
Steel inventories at the end of March of 6.49 million tons were 17.2 percent below those of last year and were equal to an unusually low 2.0-month supply.
In Canada, March steel shipments totaled 516,400 tons, or 15.9 percent more than the same month a year ago. First-quarter shipments of 1.41 million tons were 13.6 percent higher than during the 2009 quarter. Inventories of 1.36 million tons were 16.4 percent above inventories at the same time last year and equal to a 2.6-month supply.
Shipments of aluminum products from U.S. service centers surged 23.7 percent above the March 2009 total to 107,900 tons, bringing first-quarter total shipments to 291,500 tons, up 11.5 percent.
Aluminum inventories at the end of March of 273,600 tons were 15.1 percent below last year’s level and equal to a 2.5-month supply.
Canadian service center aluminum shipments of 12,600 tons were up 13.6 percent from March 2009. First-quarter shipments, at 33,500 tons, were 1.8 percent higher than the same period last year. Canadian aluminum inventories of 30,700 tons were 4.0 percent lower than a year ago and equal to a 2.4-month supply.