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Steel News January 12, 2018 12:30:41 PM

US Finished Steel Import Permits Declined Rapidly in December

Paul Ploumis
ScrapMonster Author
The finished steel products which recorded highest jump in import permits during December when compared to the November final was tool steel, whose permits witnessed an increase of 52%.
US Finished Steel Import Permits Declined Rapidly in December

SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) has reported that the U.S. steel import permit applications witnessed nearly 14% decline during the month of December last year. This is based on the latest Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) data released by the country’s Department of Commerce. It must be noted that the steel shipments by the country had incresaed by 10% in November 2017.

As per data, the steel import permit applications totaled 2.473 million net tons during the last month of the previous year. The applications dropped by 13.6% when matched with the applications during the prior month. The US steel import permit applications had totaled 2.861 million net tons in November 2017. Upon comparison with the November final imports of 2.762 million net tons, the December permits were down by 10.5%.

The imports permit application for finished steel registered decline of nearly 15%. The permit tonnage dropped to 1.854 million net tons from the final imports of 2.170 million net tons during November. The market share of finished steel is estimated at around 22% in December. For the entire year 2017, the finished steel market share is estimated at 27%.

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For the full year 2017, the finished steel imports totaled 29.534 million net tons. This is after taking into account the actual data till November and the SIMA import permit data for December. The imports surged higher by 12.1% over the previous year. Similarly, the imports of total steel surged higher by 15.5% from 2016 to total 38.149 million net tons in 2017.

The finished steel products which recorded highest jump in import permits during December when compared to the November final was tool steel, whose permits witnessed an increase of 52%. The permit applications of heavy structural shapes too were up significantly by 42%. The other products with largest increase were tin free steel (up 30%) and mechanical tubing (up 11%).  Oil country goods witnessed the largest increase during the entire year 2017. The permits recorded 197% jump. Line Pipes (up 62%) and Standard Pipe (up 39%) too reported considerable jump in permits during the whole of 2017.

South Korea continued to remain as the top supplier of finished steel to the US during 2017. The permit volumes by the country dropped marginally by 1.6% from 2016 to total 3.740 million net tons. The other key suppliers were Turkey (2.186 million net tons) and Japan (1.509 million net tons).