NEW YORK U.S. steel exports fell in May after two consecutive monthly gains, driven by a sharp decline in shipments of bloom, billet and slab.
Exports totaled 939,489 tonnes, down 4.1 percent from 979,509 tonnes in April and 10.9 percent below more than 1.05 million tonnes in May last year, according to data compiled by the Commerce Departments Enforcement and Compliance division.
Bloom, billet and slab exports plunged to 2,268 tonnes in May, down 86.9 percent from 17,358 tonnes the previous month; heavy structural shapes fell 28.9 percent to 56,026 tonnes from 78,753 tonnes in the same comparison; hot-rolled sheet dropped 23.1 percent to 55,066 tonnes from 71,572 tonnes; and cold-rolled sheet slid 20.1 percent to 43,385 tonnes from 54,329 tonnes.
Bucking the downward trend were coiled plate exports, which jumped 18.2 percent to 46,253 tonnes in May from 39,122 tonnes the previous month, and line pipe, which rose 16.5 percent to 22,855 tonnes from 19,612 tonnes.
U.S. steel exports to the Dominican Republic fell 74.9 percent in May to 5,513 tonnes from 21,953 tonnes the previous month, shipments to Italy fell 53.2 percent to 3,889 tonnes from 8,313 tonnes in the same comparison and exports to Brazil slid 28.1 percent to 7,625 tonnes from 10,619 tonnes, but shipments to China climbed 19.5 percent to 9,829 tonnes from 8,224 tonnes.
U.S. steel exports totaled 5.02 million tons in the first five months of the year, down 7.3 percent from 5.42 million tons in the same period a year earlier, according to an analysis of export data by the American Institute for International Steel.