Striking a supply-demand balance for US steel scrap

The continuing growth of electric arc furnace (EAF)-based steelmaking in the United States raises questions about supplies of scrap to feed the furnaces.

Industry observers’ views remain mixed about how much tighter the availability of US ferrous scrap – particularly of such prime or factory scrap as No. 1 busheling and No. 1 bundles – will be once the expected big jump in domestic steelmaking capacity comes online over the next few years. Adding to this uncertainty is the possibility that some announced or expected projects – even some that are already under construction – could be delayed or even canceled if the feared economic recession related to the novel coronavirus comes to fruition.
The impact is expected to vary by region, with the South and Southwest, and to a lesser extent the Midwest – where the bulk of the new capacity is to be located – being the hardest hit. Scrap availability in Texas is expected to be especially tight.

US steel mills are not expected to have any trouble securing the scrap that they need this year,...

Published

April 06, 2020

07:00 GMT

New York