LOS ANGELES A
long-awaited pricing move by Nucor-Yamato Steel Co. has set the
stage for what many buyers hope could be the first general
improvement in beam transaction prices since midyear.
Blytheville, Ark., and Nucor Corp.s Berkeley, N.C., beam
mill have both raised prices on most beam products by $35 per
ton ($1.75 per hundredweight).
Orders confirmed by
the close of business Dec. 18 "will be price protected if
shipped before Jan. 13," both producers said in notices to
move puts its published f.o.b. mill price on core wide-flange
beam sizes at $800 per ton ($40 per cwt), up from $765 per ton
previously. This leapfrogs Tampa, Fla.-based Gerdau Long Steel
North Americas $1-per-cwt increase in early November to
$39.25, which was quickly followed by the Structural and Rail
division of Steel Dynamics Inc. (SDI), Columbia City, Ind. But
SDI on Dec. 6 brought its posted price on core items down again
to $38.25, although it said it would implement a $1-per-cwt
charge on items shipped from stock.
transaction prices to medium and large service centers,
reflecting both rivalry for market share among domestic
producers and import competition in certain regions, persisted
in a range of $35 to $36 when freight charges are
Recently, according to
market sources, SDI and Gerdau have been "pushing back" on
efforts by buyers to continue discounts off published prices,
although whether the mills efforts are successful may not
be clear until after the New Year.
"Well be on the
sidelines until mid-January," said a Midwest buyer.