Section 232 tariff puts US aluminium market on edge

The US aluminium market is recoiling following President Donald Trump’s official enactment of tariffs on imported steel and aluminium, with regional premiums rising as market participants plead with the government to temper the blanket measures' severity.

American Metal Market’s assessment of the US Midwest aluminium premium on Friday March 9 placed it at 18-19 cents per lb, up 8.8% from the previous assessment of 16.5-17.5 cents per lb on March 6. Friday's assessment is the first since American Metal Market increased the frequency to twice per week.

Market participants say they have been scrambling to determine what the premium should be since March 8, when Trump signed an official proclamation instituting a 10% tariff on all US aluminium imports. North American Free Trade Agreement partners Canada and Mexico are excluded from the tariff for now, but other countries seeking exemptions must apply for them, causing uncertainty in a market reliant on prime aluminium imports to...


Kirk Maltais

March 12, 2018

02:23 GMT

New York