Market expects higher prices in 2011

Dec 14, 2010 | 01:56 PM |

The steel pipe and tube sector appears to be banking on better fortunes in the first quarter of 2011, according to a survey by Perspectives.

Price increase letters came fast and furious through November and into December, but demand did not appear to keep pace. That has prompted some market players to question whether announced increases would hold on everything from hollow structural sections (HSS) and mechanical tubing to oil country tubular goods (OCTG) and line pipe.

Asked how they might describe the current market, one third of survey participants called it "poor," another third dubbed it "fair" and the balance said it was "good."

But asked about the direction of prices, opinions were less scattered. Roughly two thirds of survey participants said they expect tags to move "upward" in the coming weeks and months, while the remainder were split between "downward" and "neutral."....

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