More players, capacity to hurt pipe, tube mart

Apr 12, 2013 | 05:23 PM | Catherine Ngai

Tags  pipe, tube, Leon Goldenberg, Dolty Cheramie, Fremak Industries, Pipe Exchange, Critical Commodities Conference, ERW energy tubulars

NEW YORK — The pipe and tube sector is set to face a major oversupply problem, with new players entering the market just as existing companies plan new expansions, and industry observers fear that not everyone will make it through.

"The problem isn’t how many are coming; the problem is that not all of them will survive. Today we don’t need one more joint of pipe, yet they’re all coming," Dolty Cheramie, president of Houston-based line pipe distributor Pipe Exchange Inc., said. "Across the nation, our inventories are very reduced and we’re scared to buy anything. Whatever you buy today is a bad deal tomorrow."

Dolty was among the participants speaking at the recent Critical Commodities Conference hosted by the American Institute for International Steel and the Port of New Orleans. Many said that margins in the pipe and tube sector are being hurt due to additional capacity being brought online. ....

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