European steel industry
Previously, we analyzed the trends in the Chinese steel industry. In this part of the series, we’ll discuss the latest steel production data in the EU (European Union). It’s important to note that the EU is the second biggest steel-consuming region.
For the last several years, the European steel industry has been reeling due to the impact of the sovereign debt crisis. ArcelorMittal (MT) and U.S. Steel Corp. (X) have operations in Europe. Companies like Steel Dynamics (STLD) and Nucor (NUE) get most of their revenue from US markets.
ArcelorMittal posted better-than-expected fourth quarter earnings in its European operations. It gets more than half of its revenue from Europe. The Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (VGK) gives you exposure to European equity markets.
Is it placed better?
In the EU, steel production fell by 1.1% in January on a year-over-year, or YoY, basis. This can be seen in the previous chart. This means that steel production in the EU fell by less than the global average. The EU consists of 28 countries. The constituent countries showed divergent trends in steel production in January.
Germany is the biggest steel producer in Europe. Germany’s steel production grew by 0.5% in January. This could be due to higher automobile sales in Europe. Some of the world’s biggest automobile companies are based in Germany.
In Italy, steel production grew by -11.3% in January. Last year, the United Kingdom was growing at a fast pace. However, steel production in the United Kingdom grew by -1% in January on a YoY basis. However, Spain’s steel production saw strong growth in January. Spain’s steel production grew by 11.8% in January on a YoY basis.
In the next part of this series, we’ll analyze the latest trend in the Japanese steel industry.