Washington, D.C. – Based on the Commerce Department’s most recent Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) data, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported today that steel import permit applications for the month of July totaled 3,202,000 net tons (NT)*. This was an 8.4% increase from the 2,955,000 permit tons recorded in June and a 28.4% increase from the June final imports total of 2,495,000 NT. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in July was 2,291,000, up 23.5% from the final imports total of 1,855,000 in June. For the first seven months of 2018 (including July SIMA permits and June final data), total and finished steel imports were 21,086,000 NT and 16,302,000 NT, down 9.2% and 9.3%, respectively, from the same period in 2017. The estimated finished steel import market share in July was 24% and is 25% year-to-date (YTD).
Finished steel imports with large increases in July permits vs. the June final included reinforcing bars (up 228%), heavy structural shapes (up 180%), tin plate (up 54%), hot rolled sheets (up 42%), line pipe (up 33%), cut lengths plates (up 27%), oil country goods (up 23%), cold rolled sheets (up 23%), plates in coils (up 20%), mechanical tubing (up 19%), sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 17%), hot rolled bars (up 11%), and wire rods (up 11%). Products with significant year-to date (YTD) increases vs. the same period in 2017 include plates in coils (up 19%), hot rolled sheets (up 19%) and line pipe (up 11%).
In July, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (194,000 NT, down 8% from June final), Japan (134,000 NT, up 4%), Vietnam (117,000 NT, down 5%), Italy (114,000 NT, up 243%) and Germany (100,000 NT, down 10%). Through the first seven months of 2018, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (1,937,000 NT, down 15% from the same period last year), Japan (875,000 NT, down 7%) and Germany (761,000 NT, up 1%).
* Monthly permit numbers provided to date may be understated, as entry documentation with the required import license number may be submitted up to ten days after imports have entered U.S. commerce.