Electrical steel surcharges tumble but base prices hold strong

Dec 10, 2008 | 07:08 AM | Maria Guzzo

The North American electrical steel market is following two distinct paths, with surcharges declining but base prices still going strong.

"We have not seen any decreases (in the base price)," said a manager at a manufacturer that uses electrical steels. "We have seen a bit of a backoff in price, but it's not significant—only pennies per pound."

AK Steel Corp., West Chester, Ohio, has slashed its January electrical steel surcharge to just $10 per ton, down 94.6 percent from a $185-per-ton surcharge for this month's shipments. AK's electrical steel surcharge has been dropping steadily since peaking at $1,040 per ton in September.

An AK Steel spokesman said the surcharge reduction is due to the drop in the price of scrap, one of the main raw materials used to make electrical steels. "The scrap price is under the threshold, so it's just the energy component that's at play in the surcharge for this time," he said.

Allegheny Ludlum Corp., a subsidiary of Allegheny Technologies Inc., Pittsburgh, also has been lowering its electrical steel surcharge, setting its January surcharge on grain-oriented silicon electrical steel at $207 per ton, down 60.6 percent from $526 per ton this month and 82.3 percent below September's peak of $1,167 per ton.....





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