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Top stainless mills on board with price boost

Keywords: Tags  NAS, ATI, TK Stainless, AK Steel, price increases, Thorsten Schier

NEW YORK — All large domestic flat-rolled stainless steel producers have followed a price hike on 200-, 300- and some 400-series stainless grades.

Ghent, Ky.-based North American Stainless Inc. announced Wednesday that it will hike base prices on 200-, 300- and 430-series cold-rolled stainless flat products by reducing the functional discount by 4 percentage points effective Jan. 1. Some sources said they had received letters outlining the increase as early as last Friday.

"NAS sort of led this increase, according to my understanding," one market source told AMM Wednesday.

The company also will increase polish extras by reducing the functional discount by 10 percentage points, according to the NAS letter. "The increase is necessary to support future investment in our business."

West Chester, Ohio-based AK Steel Corp. was the first to publicly announce a stainless price increase (, Nov. 12), but according to market sources it was the second mill after NAS to send out pricing letters.

Calvert, Ala.-based ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA LLC and ATI Allegheny Ludlum Corp., a subsidiary of Pittsburgh-based Allegheny Technologies Inc. (ATI), followed the price increases this week, sources said.

ThyssenKrupp Stainless will reduce discounts on 200-, 300- and 430-series cold-rolled stainless products by 4 percentage points and decrease the polishing discount by 10 percentage points effective Jan. 1, according to a pricing letter sent Tuesday.

ATI will hike prices by reducing the functional discount on 200, 300, ATI 430Ti, ATI 441HP, ATI 410 cold-rolled sheet and strip, cold-rolled tubular-quality sheet and strip, and precision-rolled strip products by 4 percentage points effective Dec. 31, according to an announcement released Wednesday. The company also will increase base prices for ATI 409HP and ATI 439HP by 4 cents per pound and increase prices on polished products by reducing discounts to published prices by 10 percentage points, the company said.

There was some surprise about the increases.

"We really haven’t seen enough volume to support those. We’re kind of questioning where these are coming from," a source at a West Coast stainless distributor said.

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