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Bull Moose hikes HSS $50/T; market skeptical

Keywords: Tags  Bull Moose, HSS, hollow structural sections, steel prices, mechanical tubing, Thorsten Schier

NEW YORK — At least one domestic hollow structural sections (HSS) and mechanical tubing mill has announced a price increase of $50 per ton ($2.50 per hundredweight) following similar recent hikes by domestic hot-rolled coil mills, although market participants were skeptical whether the increase will gain any traction.

Chesterfield, Mo.-based Bull Moose Tube Co. said it plans to lift prices on all HSS and mechanical products by $50 per ton effective Feb. 1 "due to rising raw material costs." Current pricing will be held for orders placed prior to Feb. 1 and shipped through Feb. 15, it said in a letter to customers.

"In this case, I really don’t see (the increase) sticking around," one Mid-Atlantic distributor said.

No other mills have followed the move yet, sources said, with some speculating that mills might wait for more clarity on the coil hikes before making any announcements.

"This time around, due to very slack demand, HSS mills are probably waiting to see if the recent coil increase sticks. If it appears that it is, I would expect all other HSS mills to do an increase," a second Mid-Atlantic distributor said. "I’m thinking we may see something from them in another week."

Mills are generally eager to raise prices as they seek to halt a recent price slide.

"We need increases," one mill source said.

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