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Letter: West Coast rebar supply not tight

Jul 18, 2018 | 09:41 AM |


More than sufficient supply of legally traded rebar is available in the western United States, according to a top Nucor long products executive.

To the Editor:
Contrary to what was reported in your July 11 story, “232 further squeezes rebar supply in western US,” there is more than enough rebar supply to meet actual demand in the West Coast market. There is not a shortage of steel for buyers who need it, but speculative buyers may find it difficult to find artificially cheap, dumped steel.

Tariffs alone do not halt imports. If the situation arises where rebar demand truly exceeds supply, imports will enter the United States even with the tariffs and will be priced at fair market levels that are based on supply and demand.

Furthermore, we do not believe independent fabricators are being disadvantaged. At Nucor, the majority of our rebar shipments go to independent fabricators versus our company-owned downstream fabrication. In addition, Canadian tariffs on rebar that went into effect on July 1 will likely significantly reduce US rebar shipments to Canada, making even more tons available in the West Coast market.

The Section 232 tariffs are taking artificially low-cost foreign imports out of the market and helping to restore a level playing field for American producers. We are confident that buyers will continue to benefit from having access to a stable supply of domestic steel and an American steel industry that is open for business.

DAVE SUMOSKI
Executive vice president of merchant and rebar products
Nucor Corp