Steel sheet market stable; imports a concern

Nov 22, 2013 | 01:53 PM | Catherine Ngai

Tags  steel sheet, hot-rolled sheet, steel imports, steel buyers, steel traders, flat-rolled steel, steel prices, AK Steel Severstal North America

NEW YORK — The U.S. steel sheet market was stable this past week as extended lead times helped mills hold the line on higher pricing, sources said, although some raised concerns over how long the stability would last, particularly with competitive and attractive imports set to arrive in the middle of the first quarter.

With just days before Thanksgiving, a traditionally sluggish period for the sector, service centers and mills are reporting stable order entries, as traders also cite a pickup in business as a result of higher pricing, razor-thin inventory levels and longer lead times.

"We’ve been pretty busy relative to it being a week before Thanksgiving," one Midwest service center source said. "The thing is that people are keeping their inventories low and we’ve been able to move our pricing up as well."....

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