Ferroalloys tied closely to market demand for steel

May 29, 2012 | 04:42 PM |

Tags  US ferroalloy imports, ferroalloy market, US steelmakers, U.S. Geological Survey, Hickman, Williams & Co., Robert Davis,

The demand for, and market success of, ferroalloys is closely tied to trends within the steel industry, especially the need for higher-quality, higher-strength products.

The U.S. steel industry, the leading consumer of ferroalloys, is continually improving techniques for producing higher-quality steel. The demand for high-quality steel isn’t expected to abate in the near future, but in some cases the improved techniques might result in a decrease of the quantity of ferroalloys needed, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Since ferroalloys are used primarily in the manufacture of steel, the actual end uses are numerous, such as in the construction of buildings, cars and household goods and in the aerospace industry.

The United States, and North America in general, are net importers of ferroalloys, according to Robert Davis, vice president of Oak Brook, Ill.-based Hickman, Williams & Co. North American production has fallen to about 1.5 percent of worldwide production today from around 5.3 percent in 2000.....

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