December 2012 - During the third quarter, the domestic steel market’s recovery slowed down slightly. Financial analysts noted an increase in M&A market transaction volume, although announced transaction values fell. Steel prices decreased on lower volumes across the board, while global macroeconomic concerns and tight pricing sustained uncertainty for steel producers. Domestic steel producers’ utilization rate decreased to an average of 73.4 percent. Domestic crude steel production decreased to 24.3 million tons, a decline of 0.8 percent from 24.5 million tons during the same period last year. For the 12th quarter in a row, the U.S. economy grew, with real GDP at 2.0 percent as compared to 1.3 percent in the second quarter. China’s economy continued to slow in the third quarter of 2012, achieving GDP growth of 7.4 percent, well below its growth of 9.1 percent in the second quarter of 2011.
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