US stainless import drag seen lingering for next several months

Nov 30, 2007 | 01:07 PM | Maria Guzzo

U.S. imports of stainless steel declined in October, a situation that's likely to continue for a couple of months before levels pick back up again, sources said.

"It's a function of the changing nickel prices," one Midwest service center manager said. "Folks have to buy far in advance for imports, so the products that were bought to arrive in October were bought in the summer when things were expensive, so there was a lot less buying. We'll see a hangover on that for the next several months. After that, imports will show a return."

Another factor is the weakness of the U.S. dollar and its loss of buying power, a southern-based service center manager said. "Buying from Europe or England or Japan just costs more," he said, "so why do it?"....

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