Steel shipments rise as output falls: MSCI

Apr 15, 2014 | 05:18 PM | Michael Cowden

Tags  Metals Service Center Insitute, MSCI, steel shipments, steel inventories, flat-rolled steel, U.S. Steel, service center, Michael Cowden

CHICAGO — North American steel service centers’ shipments rose in March as production problems and lingering weather-related logistic disruptions hampered output from mills.

The collision between increased shipments and reduced output, particularly from blast furnace producers in the Midwest, has placed an enormous strain on the domestic steel supply chain, service center sources said.

"The biggest story out there is the mills being late," one service center source in the Midwest said. "The mills were late even before U.S. Steel (Corp.)’s issues just because the winter really played havoc on delivery."

Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel last week declared force majeure at its Great Lakes Works in Ecorse, Mich. (, April 11), and previously curtailed production at its Gary Works in northwest Indiana due to ice conditions on the Great Lakes and insufficient raw materials (, April 3). But market sources also noted that those are only the most recent and most dramatic incidents to hit an already distressed market.....

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