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A Deeper Dive into August Steel Imports Data

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Sep. 28 2018, Updated 10:05 a.m. ET

August steel imports data

In this article, we’ll do a detailed analysis of August steel imports data. Last month, imports of blooms, billets, and slabs, which are semi-finished steel products requiring more processing, rose 19.1% sequentially. Imports also rose on a yearly basis.

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Flat rolled steel

In the flat rolled steel space, HRC (hot roll coil) imports rose 10.9% on a yearly basis. However, imports fell as compared to July. Meanwhile, CRC (cold roll coil) imports fell a whopping 38.5% year-over-year (or YoY). August CRC imports were the lowest since March 2016. Imports of galvanized steel products also fell on a monthly as well as sequential basis last month. AK Steel (AKS) has a high percentage of CRC and galvanized steel products in its product mix.

Rebars

Rebar (or reinforcing bar) imports more than doubled on a yearly basis last month. However, imports fell 3.6% sequentially. In August, President Trump authorized the doubling of Section 232 tariffs on Turkey after the sharp fall in the Turkish currency. Turkey is the world’s second largest rebar exporter (XME). Nucor (NUE) is North America’s largest rebar supplier and is further adding capacity to expand its geographical reach.

OCTG (oil country tubular goods) imports fell 21% YoY last month. However, imports were similar to July. The products are used in the energy industry. The US energy industry has requested several product exemptions from the Section 232 tariffs. U.S. Steel’s (X) Tubular segment produces OCTG products.

In the next article, we’ll see how falling steel imports are impacting US steel production (MT).

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