Hot-rolled imports halt as cold-rolled flows in

Jun 12, 2013 | 02:14 PM | Catherine Ngai

Tags  steel traders, steel imports, steel prices, Port of Houston, flat-rolled, hot-rolled, cold-rolled, catherine ngai

NEW YORK — Traders selling foreign hot-rolled steel into the U.S. market are hoping that the recent price increases by U.S. mills, coupled with domestic labor issues and outages, will revive the lackluster importing sector.

But with buyers continuing to cite long import lead times, with delivery into the fall, and little incentive to buy foreign when domestic prices are hovering around the $600-per-ton mark, import business has nonetheless continued to be difficult.

"For us flat-rolled traders, we’re all dead in the water. The importing business has been so dull lately; there’s just no zip," one trader said. "If hot-rolled gets tighter and prices climb, maybe there will be a glimmer of hope."....

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