Steel sheet prices hold, but hikes expected

Jul 17, 2014 | 04:06 PM | Michael Cowden

Tags  steel, steel prices, hot-rolled, cold-rolled, hot-dipped galvanized, trade petition, China, oil country tubular goods OCTG

CHICAGO — Steel sheet prices continued to hold steady this week, although market sources expect increases—perhaps imminently—in response to trade actions already undertaken or soon to be filed by U.S. mills.

The talk of upward prices also comes as lead times at several domestic mills have moved out recently and as some mills are said to be talking up hot band prices as high as $700 per ton ($35 per hundredweight).

AMM’s hot-rolled coil price assessment remained unchanged this week at $33.50 per cwt ($670 per ton), while cold-rolled coil held firm at $39.50 per cwt ($790 per ton).

Market sources generally dismissed the notion of steel going for $35 per cwt, which in the past has been a high-water mark for domestic prices and difficult for mills to sustain. Sources said deals were still available this week at $33.50 per cwt, but predicted that such pricing might not be available as soon as next week as mills are expected to either officially announce price increases or quietly lift tags without any official announcement.....

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