July steel imports up 4 percent vs. June 2008
Based on preliminary Census Bureau data, the American
Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported that
the United States imported a total of 2,842,000
net tons (NT) of steel in July 2008, including
2,177,000 NT of finished steel (up 4 and 3 percent,
respectively, vs. June final data).
While total and finished steel imports through the
first seven months of 2008 are down 11 percent
and 13 percent, respectively, vs. the same period
in 2007, the monthly average for finished steel
imports in the most recent 3-month period (May-July
2008) is up 1 percent vs. the monthly average
in the previous 3 months (February-April 2008).
Total and finished steel imports on an annualized
basis this year are down 3 and 4 percent vs. 2007.
Key products with large increases in July compared
to the month before include: Sheet & Strip–All
Other (up 36 percent), Reinforcing Bar (up 30
percent), Oil Country Goods (up 18 percent), Sheet & Strip–Hot
Dipped Galvanized (up 14 percent) and Plates in
Coils (up 14 percent). For the year-to-date in
2008, products with significant increases vs.
2007 include Oil Country Goods (up 32 percent)
and Line Pipe (up 14 percent).
In July, the largest volume of finished steel imports
from offshore was from China (316,000 NT, down
14 percent from June). While steel imports from
China in the first 7 months of 2008 are down 38
percent compared to the same period last year,
Chinese imports for the most recent 3-month period
(July-May) are up 48 percent compared to the prior
3 months (April-February).