July steel import permit application numbers decline
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 July totaled 2,627,000 net tons (NT). This was an 8 percent decrease from the 2,855,000 permit tons recorded in June, but a 1 percent increase from the June preliminary imports total of 2,593,000 NT.
Import permit tonnage for finished steel in July was 2,067,000 NT, down 2 percent from the preliminary imports total of 2,098,000 NT in June. The estimated finished steel import market share in July was 23 percent, and it is 24 percent through 7 months of 2012.
Finished steel imports with large increases in July permits versus the June preliminary include line pipe (up 50 percent), standard rails (up 43 percent), hot rolled sheets (up 16 percent) and cold finished bars (up 14 percent). Major products with significant year-to-date (YTD) increases versus the same period in 2011 include reinforcing bars (up 54 percent), line pipe (up 45 percent), cut lengths plates (up 40 percent), oil country goods (up 36 percent), sheets and strip hot dipped galvanized (up 31 percent) and sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 27 percent).
In July, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (332,000 NT, up 13 percent from June), Japan (169,000 NT, up 29 percent), China (119,000 NT, down 32 percent), Italy (88,000 NT, up 81 percent) and India (84,000 NT, up 187 percent). Through the first 7 months of 2012, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (2,198,000 NT, up 21 percent from the same period in 2011), Japan (1,151,000 NT, up 28 percent) and China (903,000 NT, up 26 percent).