January SIMA finished import permits increase
Based on the Commerce Department’s most recent Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) data, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported that steel import permit applications for the month of January totaled 2,629,000 net tons (NT). This was an 8 percent increase from the 2,438,000 permit tons recorded in December and up 12 percent from the December preliminary imports total of 2,339,000 NT. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in January was 2,168,000 NT, up 31 percent from the preliminary imports total of 1,654,000 NT in December. January 2013 total and finished steel import permit tons would annualize at 31,546,000 NT and 26,014,000 NT, down 5 percent and up 1 percent, respectively, vs. the 33,348,000 NT and 25,699,000 NT imported in 2012. The estimated finished steel import market share in January was 24 percent.
Finished steel imports with large increases in January permits versus the December preliminary include reinforcing bars (up 143 percent), heavy structural shapes (up 136 percent), sheets and strip galvanized electrolytic (up 103 percent) and oil country goods (up 89 percent).
In January, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (368,000 NT) and China (184,000 NT).