Good times ahead for stainless despite volatility: Cornelius

Sep 26, 2012 | 11:31 AM | Michael Cowden

Tags  Marcegaglia, Marcegaglia USA, David Cornelius, steel surcharge, stainless steel, price volatility, shale, energy natural gas

CHICAGO — While North American stainless steel prices remain on a roller-coaster ride, better times might be on the horizon, according to Marcegaglia USA Inc. president David Cornelius.

A decade ago, nickel prices were determined primarily by supply and demand, he said.

"Today, we have investors buying and selling nickel as you would any other commodity," Cornelius said at AMM’s 26th annual Stainless & Its Alloys Conference in Chicago. "As a result, the pricing is at times not reflective of the underlying fundamentals but driven by speculation of brokerage houses."

The surcharge components of 304-series stainless steel, for example, skyrocketed to 86 cents per pound in January this year from 2.9 cents per pound in January 2002, Cornelius said. For 316 stainless, the fluctuations have been even greater, he said.....

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