With some states being overwhelmed by increased novel coronavirus infections, it is possible that they will resume lockdowns, sources said; and the threat of renewed shutdowns has affected both steel service centers and end users’ steel purchasing decisions.
Inventory levels for flat-rolled steel at most service centers are still relatively high, sources noted. And if states reinstate stay-at-home orders, there is no rush to buy steel, especially products coming from overseas.
“It is pretty much dead,” one Midwest trader source said of his company’s imported steel business.
US finished steel imports totaled 1.6 million tonnes in May, down by 35.4% from 2.5 million tonnes in April and down by 13.6% from 1.9 million tonnes in May 2019, according to preliminary Census data from the US Department of Commerce’s Enforcement and Compliance division, last updated...