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Finished Steel Imports Down 19% Through May

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The U.S. imported a total of 1.8 million net tons of steel in May 2020, including 1.5 million tons of finished steel, the American Iron and Steel Institute reported. Total imports were down 35.5 percent and finished steel imports declined 13.2 percent compared with April’s totals.

Through the first five months of 2020, total imports of 11 million tons were down 19.2 percent, while finished imports declined 26.7 percent compared with 2019. Finished steel market share totaled 23 percent in May, and is estimated at 18 percent for the year to date.

Key finished steel products with a significant increase in imports in May compared with April are oil country goods, up 71 percent; standard pipe, up 44 percent; heavy structural shapes, up 37 percent; and tin plate, up 31 percent.

In May the largest volumes of finished steel imports from offshore were from South Korea at 229,000 tons, up 42 percent from April; Japan at 103,000 tons, up 50 percent; Turkey at 85,000 tons, up 61 percent; and Taiwan at 81,000 tons, up 70 percent. For the year to date, South Korean imports were down 27 percent to 937,000 tons, Japanese imports declined 39 percent to 373,000 tons, imports from Germany were off 42 percent to 298,000 tons, and Turkish imports were up 59 percent to 294,000.

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