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US Steel import permit applications plunge by 15.4 percent in November

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WASHINGTON, D.C (Scrap Register): 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 November totaled 2,544,000 net tons (NT).

This was a 15.4% decrease from the 3,007,000 permit tons recorded in October and a 22.1% decrease from the October preliminary imports total of 3,264,000 NT. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in November was 1,920,000, down 3.6% from the preliminary imports total of 1,991,000 in October.

For the first 11 months of 2018 (including November SIMA permits and October preliminary data), total and finished steel imports were 31,979,000 NT and 24,002,000 NT, down 10.4% and 13.3%, respectively, from the same period in 2017. The estimated finished steel import market share in November was 20% and is 23% year-to-date (YTD).

Finished steel imports with large increases in November permits vs. the October preliminary included electrolytic galvanized sheets and strip (up 224%), wire rods (up 86%), heavy structural shapes (up 62%), tin free steel (up 34%), mechanical tubing (up 14%), and sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 14%). Products with significant year-to date (YTD) increases vs. the same period in 2017 include hot rolled sheets (up 21%) and plates in coils (up 15%).

In November, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (182,000 NT, down 1% from October preliminary), Japan (142,000 NT, up 35%), Germany (123,000 NT, up 8%), Vietnam (115,000 NT, no change) and Taiwan (92,000 NT, up 36%). Through the first 11 months of 2018, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (2,660,000 NT, down 25% from the same period last year), Japan (1,311,000 NT, down 8%) and Germany (1,222,000 NT, down 6%).

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