Beam prices holding steady for January

Dec 18, 2006 | 04:41 PM | Frank Haflich

Despite a raw material surcharge increase, wide-flange steel beams appear destined for their sixth straight month of steady pricing.

Nucor-Yamato Steel Co. has opted for pricing stability, offsetting a $10 boost to $68 a ton in its January surcharge with a corresponding reduction in its base prices.

Once again, this would leave the f.o.b. price of one popular item, W8 by 18 beams, at $670 a ton ($33.50 per hundredweight). Most other major producers are expected to follow the Blytheville, Ark., mini-mill, including the Columbia City, Ind.,-based Structural and Rail division of Steel Dynamics Inc.

Beam demand remains strong, notwithstanding any seasonal slowing, although inventories at the service center level have grown, market sources said. Competition in the resale markets remains stiffer than at the mill level, with some distributor profit margins narrowing. ....

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