AK Steel Hikes Stainless Steel Prices, Nickel Up Again on LME

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AK Steel AKS said yesterday that it will increase base prices for all of its stainless steel products, effective with shipments on July 6, 2014. AK Steel said that all automotive grades will be increased by $40 per ton, and that all non-automotive grades will be increased by $200 to $300 per ton, depending on the product.

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Surcharges for the broad range of stainless steel products that AK Steel produces will remain in effect. AK Steel is following a move by competitor ATI, who raised prices a week ago amid continued increasing prices of nickel, the alloying metal in stainless steel.

With a decline of 2.0 percent to INR 1,106 ($18.38) per kilogram on Tuesday, June 24, the cash price of primary Indian nickel recorded the biggest decline of the day. After falling for two days, the nickel spot price rose 0.5 percent on the LME to $18,415 per metric ton. Following a 0.2 percent rise on Tuesday, the 3-month price of nickel closed on the LME at $18,500 per metric ton.

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Chinese stainless steel closed mixed yesterday. For the fifth consecutive day, the price of Chinese ferro-chrome held flat at CNY 8,300 ($1,333) per metric ton. The price of Chinese ferro-moly remained essentially flat at CNY 145,000 ($23,290) per metric ton.

The price of Chinese primary nickel declined 0.7 percent to CNY 126,800 ($20,366) per metric ton. The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge saw little movement at $1.29 per pound. The price of Chinese 316 stainless coil was unchanged at CNY 26,000 ($4,176) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless coil continues hovering around CNY 16,400 ($2,634) per metric ton for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap held steady at CNY 16,100 ($2,586) per metric ton.

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