NEW YORK North American distributors shipments of carbon pipe and tubing increased sharply in January compared with the previous month, according to the latest Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) data.
U.S. shipments totaled 234,500 tons last month, up 25.7 percent from 186,500 tons in December although 2.9 percent lower than 241,400 tons a year earlier.
Distributors inventories totaled 664,100 tons (2.8 months supply at current shipping rates) at the end of January, down from 717,300 tons (3.8 months supply) a month earlier and 707,700 tons (2.9 months supply) in January last year.
Sources in the structural tubing market said that outbound shipments had slowed somewhat due to the severe winter weather in some regions of the country early in the year, but day-to-day demand was decent considering the loss of shipping days (amm.com, Feb. 18).
Carbon pipe and tubing shipments by Canadian distributors totaled 54,200 tons last month, up 43.4 percent from 37,800 tons in December and 0.7 percent from 53,900 tons a year earlier. Inventories totaled 132,500 tons (2.4 months supply) at the end of January vs. 141,300 tons (3.7 months supply) a month earlier and 123,500 tons (2.3 months supply) in January last year.