Steel pipe, tube mills have mixed ’12 outlook

Nov 15, 2011 | 05:22 PM | Michael Cowden

Tags  Perspectives, steel pipe, steel tube, HSS, OCTG, line pipe, cold drawn, seamless mechanical

TORONTO — Steel pipe and tube prices have continued to follow a split path, with energy tubulars generally recording gains while non-energy pipe and tube tags continue to suffer.

In non-energy products, the exception continued to be specialty items, such as cold-drawn seamless mechanical tubing, which have maintained solid prices and long lead times thanks to steady demand from the industrial and heavy equipment markets and limited capacity, according to buyer sources.

On the energy side, while commodity-grade line pipe and oil country tubular goods (OCTG) may have experienced small price moves up or down, alloy material continued its upward price trend as strong demand from shale plays continued to drive drilling activity.

About 60 percent of respondents to a recent Perspectives survey said they expect prices to remain neutral or even trend downward in the coming weeks and months, while the remaining 40 percent said they expect prices to move up.....

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