Based on the most recent Commerce Department 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 August total 3,009,000 net tons.
This was a 9% decrease from the 3,315,000 permit tons recorded in July and a 7% decrease from the July Preliminary imports total of 3,243,000 nt. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in August was 2,339,000 nt down 9% from the preliminary imports total of 2,578,000 in July. For the first eight months of 2015 (including August SIMA and the July preliminary number) total and finished steel imports were 27,972,000 nt and 22,779,000 nt, respectively, down 2% and up 6% from the same period in 2014.
The estimated finished steel import market share in August was 26% and is 30% on the year-to-date.
Finished steel imports with large increases in August permits vs. the July Preliminary included wire rods (up 36%), tin plate (up 21%) and oil country tubular goods (up 11%). Products with significant year-to-date increases vs. the same period in 2014 include rebar (up 46%), line pipe (up 43%), standard pipe (up 30%), tin plate (up 20%), sheets and strip hot-dipped galvanized (up 18%), wire drawn (up 11%) and cold-rolled sheets (up 10%).
In August, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for South Korea (317,000 NT, up 3% from July Preliminary), Japan (220,000 NT up 23%), Brazil (181,000 NT, up 92%), China (172,000, down 39%) and Turkey (141,000 NT, down 38%). Through the first eight months of 2015, the largest offshore suppliers were South Korea (3,683,000 NT, up 2% from the same period in 2014), Turkey (1,978,000 NT, up 51%) and China (1,977,000, down 2%).