CHICAGO Wheatland Tube Co. appears to have kicked off a round of steel pipe price hikes.
The Sharon, Pa.-based subsidiary of based JMC Steel Group Inc., Chicago, said in a letter to customers dated Thursday that it is boosting tags on continuous weld pipe by 5 percent, sprinkler pipe by 6 percent, A106 seamless material by 5 percent and grade B electric-resistance weld (ERW) pipe by $50 per ton ($2.50 per hundredweight).
The price hike was necessary because of "additional increases" in the price of flat-rolled steel, according to Wheatland.
Domestic mills of flat-rolled product, the substrate used to make welded pipe, previously announced a price increase of $50 per ton (amm.com, Nov. 7).
Wheatland Tube said that the boost to tags would be effective with all new orders and outstanding quotations, but noted that orders already on its books would be shipped at previously acknowledged prices.
The move was followed by Nova Tube Inc., Montreal, which plans to raise prices on grade B ERW pipe by $50 per ton and ERW A-795 schedule-10 material by 6 percent, effective at the close of business Friday, it said. The company cited the "recent increases in raw material" costs.
Market sources said that other pipe mills would likely follow Wheatlands lead, but some questioned how successful the increase might be given soft demand and domestic mills recent loss of a key trade petition.
The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) voted Wednesday that imports of circular-welded carbon-quality steel pipe from four Asian and Middle Eastern countries werent hurting the domestic industry (amm.com, Nov. 14). JMC Steel Group was among the petitioners.
"Its not an easy market out there," one mill source said.