AIIS: Steel Imports Increase in January
Imports increased in January compared to December by 9.4 percent, according to preliminary government data and the American Institute for International Steel, McLean Va. Total steel imports in January were 2.05 million tons, 9.4 percent more than December and a 9.4 percent increase compared to the same month in 2010.
Imports from the NAFTA region jumped by 31.3 percent in January over the final data for December, as suppliers in the region responded quickly to improved demand, restocking requirements and increased prices in the U.S. market. The increase in imports from the NAFTA region reflect more than the total increase in imports, as non-NAFTA suppliers registered a small decline in total tonnage during the same period.
“The lag time for order to delivery from offshore producers is generally from two to three months, so non-NAFTA imports in January reflect market conditions before the steel market improved,” says David Phelps, president of AIIS.
The data show that imported semifinished products increased from 377,000 in January 2010 to 417,000 tons this year, a 10.5 percent increase.