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Steel imports down 21% YTD through February

March 24, 2020 - Based on preliminary Census Bureau data, the American Iron and Steel Institute reported that the U.S. imported a total of 1,505,000 net tons (NT) of steel in February 2020, including 1,344,000 net tons (NT) of finished steel (down 52.2% and 18.4%, respectively, vs. January final data).

Through the first two months of 2020, total and finished steel imports are 4,655,000 and 2,992,000 net tons (NT), down 21.3% and 28.7%, respectively, vs. the same period in 2019.  Annualized total and finished steel imports in 2020 would be 27.9 and 18.0 million NT, unchanged and down 14.7%, respectively, vs. 2019.   Finished steel import market share was an estimated 15% in February and is estimated at 16% over the first two months of 2020.

Key finished steel products with a significant import increase in February compared to January are heavy structural shapes (up 57%) and tin plate (up 15%).   A product with a significant year-to-date (YTD) increase vs. the same period in 2019 was mechanical tubing (up 12%). VIEW FULL REPORT >

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In February the largest volumes of finished steel imports from offshore were from South Korea (158,000 NT, down 13% from January final), Turkey (73,000 NT, up 44%), Japan (69,000 NT, down 9%), Germany (52,000 NT, up 7%) and Brazil (37,000 NT, down 58%).  For the first two months of 2020, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (340,000 NT, down 38% vs. the same period in 2019), Japan (146,000 NT, down 37%), Brazil (126,000 NT, down 16%), Turkey (124,000 NT, up 23%) and Germany (100,000 NT, down 54%). Below are charts on estimated steel import market share in recent months and on finished steel imports from offshore by country.

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