NEW YORK Rebar
price increases have gradually filtered into the marketplace,
with demand in most regions strong enough to support higher
Nucor Corp. and Steel Dynamics Inc.s Roanoke Bar unit in
Roanoke, Va., joined Irving, Texas-based Commercial Metals
Co.s CMC Steel Arizona and Tampa, Fla.-based Gerdau Long
Steel North Americas $20-per-ton ($1-per-hundredweight)
November price increases with their own announcements Dec. 3
amm.com, Dec. 3). All major U.S. rebar mills have
announced total price increases of $30 per ton ($1.50 per cwt)
The price increases
were delayed from taking immediate effect, with many buyers
given certain time periods to pick up already-ordered steel
from the mills at previous prices.
Much of the increased
amounts is now being paid, however, buyers said, putting the
transactional price for Grade 60 No. 5 rebar at around $655 per
ton ($32.75 per cwt) f.o.b. mill. Construction demand has not
tapered as it usually does at year-end, supporting prices.
"Sometimes the mills
have been holding (old) pricing on stuff thats on order.
Theyve got cutoff dates, though," a rebar buyer said.
"There hasnt been maneuvering as far as cutting
Mills have been under
pressure to raise prices as scrap tags have increased in recent
months with AMMs Midwest shredded scrap prices
rising more than $30 since September and likely to continue to
climb this month (
amm.com, Dec. 5).
"The price increases
on rebar are not as high as raw material increases, but they
increased nevertheless," a mill source said. "Theyre
looking like theyre sticking and theres positive
momentum, but margins are still pressed, unfortunately."
Some rebar buyers said
they have bought increased amounts of rebar, anticipating price
increases, and are holding on to higher inventories now to
avoid paying higher prices later.
The price increases
over the past two months have followed a trade case against
rebar imports from Turkey and Mexico, higher scrap prices and
stronger-than-expected year-end demand.
"December is busy in
the Midwest mainly because the projects are getting rushed to
get done. A good, busy December is a rare thing so you gotta
take advantage of it," the mill source said.