Finished Import Market Share Estimated at 19 Percent in May

Posted on 10 June 2021

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 May totaled 2,621,000 net tons (NT)*. This was a 3.8% increase from the 2,525,000 permit tons recorded in April and a 0.7% decrease from the April final imports total of 2,638,000. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in May was 1,823,000, up 9.9% from the final imports total of 1,658,000 in April. For the first five months of 2021 (including May SIMA permits and April final imports), total and finished steel imports were 11,888,000 NT and 7,944,000 NT, up 8.1% and 8.5%, respectively, from the same period in 2020. The estimated finished steel import market share in May was 19% and is 18% year-to-date (YTD).

Finished steel imports with large increases in May permits vs. the April final imports include tin plate (up 210%), tin free steel (up 75%), light shapes bars (up 45%), cold rolled sheets (up 39%), sheets and strip hot dipped galvanized (up 30%), wire rods (up 29%) and wire drawn (up 10%). Products with significant year-to date (YTD) increases vs. the same period in 2020 include hot rolled strip (up 58%), light shapes bars (up 55%), hot rolled sheets (up 42%), sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 30%), cut lengths plates (up 30%), plates in coils (up 29%), wire drawn (up 18%), tin plate (up 14%) and sheets and strip hot dipped galvanized (up 13%).

In May, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (236,000 NT, down 11% from April final), Japan (98,000 NT, up 11%), Germany (82,000 NT, up 72%), Turkey (74,000 NT, up 18%) and Taiwan (74,000 NT, up 85%). Through the first five months of 2021, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (1,103,000 NT, up 18% from the same period last year), Japan (405,000 NT, up 8%) and Germany (301,000 NT, up 1%).

*Note that import permits data are counts of tonnages requested in applications for licenses to import steel mill products and are not actual import volumes. For a number of reasons, permit tonnages may understate or overstate actual import volumes for the month, preliminary estimates of which will be available later this month.

Source : AISI