Flat-rolled prices already moving to higher ground

Dec 11, 2009 | 11:45 AM | Scott Robertson

North American steelmakers who authored carbon flat-rolled steel price increases for January and February shipment dates are seeing early fruits of their efforts in the form of rapidly rising tags.

Buyers who less than a week ago were able to secure hot-rolled sheet for as little as $500 per ton ($25 per hundredweight) now say they've already been hit with prices ranging from $540 to $550 per ton ($27 to $27.50 per cwt) for January orders.

"I can't get anything below $27 (per cwt) and I have a lot of tons out there," one Midwest service center source said. "I've heard from everyone—U.S. Steel (Corp.), Nucor (Corp.), SDI (Steel Dynamics Inc.)—and they are all at $27.50 or more on hot-rolled. If you push a little you can get $27, but that's about it. Algoma (Essar Steel Algoma Inc.) is at $27.75 (per cwt, or $555 per ton) and they won't negotiate off....

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