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Gerdau nixes $30 per ton price hike on beams

Keywords: Tags  steel, wide-flange beams, price increase, cancellation, Gerdau Long Steel North Americas, Nucor-Yamato, Steel Dynamics, Inc. Frank Haflich


LOS ANGELES — Gerdau Long Steel North America’s decision to cancel its $30-per-ton price increase on steel beams came as little surprise to buyers as other major mills failed to support the move.

The Tampa, Fla.-based producer said in a Jan. 30 letter to customers that "in order to be competitive" it was "rescinding" its Jan. 13 increase of $1.50 per hundredweight ($30 per ton) that was due to begin with shipments Feb. 1 (amm.com, Jan. 22).

This brings Gerdau’s published price on core sizes of wide-flange beams back to $40 per cwt ($800 per ton), in line with rivals Nucor-Yamato Steel Co., Blytheville, Ark., and Fort Wayne, Ind.-based Steel Dynamics Inc.’s (SDI’s) Structural and Rail division in Columbia City, Ind.

Gerdau "had to start off February at least competitive" with Nucor-Yamato and SDI, a service center buyer said.

Initial indications that Gerdau’s increase wasn’t holding began to surface more than a week ago, with industry reports that it was willing to trim its increase to certain customers by about 50 cents per cwt ($10 per ton). However, a spokeswoman said at the time the posted increase still held.

But buyers said pressure was building on Gerdau to clear up any uncertainty as the Feb. 1 shipment date approached.

"I was staying away from Gerdau" until that uncertainty was resolved this past week, a Midwest buyer said.


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