Domestic mills rebar prices were unchanged this month as
demand remained relatively soft and some buyers optimism
for the end of the year waned.
Market sources had
predicted a significant improvement in business in the second
half of 2013, forecasting an increase in nonresidential
construction nationwide and expressing hope that rebar prices
would rise (
amm.com, Feb. 5).
Prices for domestic
Grade 60 No. 5 rebar have stagnated at around $645 per ton
($32.25 per hundredweight) for three months, however, and
nonresidential construction has not increased significantly,
much seeing a flatline on pricing," a rebar buyer in the
Northeast said. "Shame on all the guru analytical guys saying
its going to be third, fourth quarter that we see a
Rebar prices saw more
month-over-month volatility earlier this year, but prices have
largely stabilized as shredded automotive scrap tags have
fluctuated less and mills have decoupled rebar prices from
Many rebar buyers said
summer activity has not made up for the late start in
construction caused by heavy rain and cold temperatures in the
spring in many regions of the country.
Sources said that the
end of the year was unlikely to bring a rush of purchases.
"Fabricators, even the
big guys, dont have a great backlog, and theres
this time of the year that if you havent seen a job,
theres not a lot of hope before the end of the year," a
mill source said.
disagreed, saying demand has been relatively robust, and held
out hope that the year will finish strong.
"In the Dakotas, Iowa
and Nebraska, you dont have too many months left," a
rebar buyer in the Midwest said. "Youve got to start
talking about snowyoure only two, three months away
from snowfall and youve got to get projects going."
"Right now were
doing fine, so hopefully it continues through the fall," a
rebar buyer in the Great Plains said.
While data shows
spotty increases in construction activity and spending so far
this year (
amm.com, Aug. 14), sources said most of their
orders were for smaller residential projects.