The Federal Reserve released its last assessment of the economy before its next meeting and steel imports into the U.S. were down in July.
Fed Upbeat About the Economy Ahead of Meeting
The Federal Reserve‘s Beige Book assessment of the economy is generally positive, noting a tight labor market in some areas but little evidence of wage inflation.
It’s the latest data point for policymakers before they meet this month and decide whether to raise interest rates amid mixed signals and scant progress toward a 2% inflation target.
Steel Imports Into the US Down in July
Based on the Commerce Department’s most recent Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) data, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported recently that steel import permit applications for the month of August totaled 3,028,000 net tons. This was an 8% decrease from the 3,294,000 permit tons recorded in July and a 7% decrease from the July final imports total of 3,266,000 nt.
Import permit tonnage for finished steel in August was 2,282,000 nt, down 8% from the final imports total of 2,471,000 nt in July. For the first eight months of 2016 (including August SIMA permits and July final data), total and finished steel imports were 22,001,000 nt and 17,576,000 nt, down 22% and 23%, respectively, from the same period in 2015. The estimated finished steel import market share in August was 25% and is 25% year-to-date.