NEW YORK Oil country tubular goods (OCTG) prices rose in March to the highest levels this year despite market sentiment remaining flat since February.
Overall market sentiment is relatively unchanged, with the OCTG distributors index at 48, Kurt Minnich, manager of Tulsa, Okla.-based Pipe Logix LLC, said in a statement. New orders have improved, but inventory continues to be a bit high and the overall supply balance is viewed as moderately oversupplied.
OCTG product prices averaged $1,641 per short ton in March, up 1.4 percent from $1,619 the previous month. Seamless product averaged $1,769 per ton, up 1.8 percent from $1,738 in the same comparison, while electric-resistance welded (ERW) product climbed 0.8 percent to $1,513 per ton from $1,501, both year-to-date highs.
Distributor selling prices for seamless K55 production casing jumped 6.5 percent to $1,470 per ton in March, while seamless N80 tubing rose 3.6 percent to $1,985 per ton.
OCTG shipments from distributors totaled 581,000 tons in January, well above the trailing average of 521,000 tons per month, according to Minnich. Shipments per rig averaged 295 tons over the past 12 months, an 8-percent increase from the previous 12 months.