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Steel imports rise 26.6 percent in January

Keywords: Tags  steel imports, hot-rolled sheet, oil country tubular goods, hot-dipped galvanized sheet, Census Bureau, Catherine Ngai

NEW YORK — U.S. steel imports hit a more than one-year high in January due to increased foreign volumes for several major product groups, according to preliminary U.S. Census Bureau data.

However, sheet imports for delivery in the summer will likely fall due to a narrowing spread between domestic and foreign pricing, one buyer and a trader told AMM.

"Demand has been tepid at best," the trader said.

Increases were seen in most product groups in January vs. the prior month, including semifinished (up 24 percent), oil country tubular goods (up 56.9 percent), hot-rolled sheet (up 10.4 percent) and hot-dipped galvanized sheet and strip (up 38.3 percent).

The moves come as several trade actions—including wire rod, reinforcing bar and OCTG— are pending.

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