Global crude steel production in September rose 4.4% compared with production in September 2017, according to the World Steel Association’s monthly production report.
The percent change represents an increase from the previous month, when August production rose 2.7% compared with August 2017.
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Global crude steel production hit 151.7 million tons (MT) in September, based on data from the 64 countries reporting to the World Steel Association. The 2018 high came in May, with a reported 154.7 MT produced that month.
Through the first nine months of the year, production reached 1,347.0 (MT), marking a 4.7% increase compared to the same time frame in 2017.
Production by Region
The monthly report also breaks out production by region or trading blocs.
Asia produced 946.8 MT of crude steel, marking a jump of 5.5% over the first nine months of 2017.
The E.U., meanwhile, produced 128.0 MT of crude steel in the same time frame, up by 1.3%. North American production reached 89.7 Mt, marking an increase of 3.4%.
Within the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), which includes Russia, 76.2 MT of crude steel were produced, marking a 1.8% increase.
Chinese Production Jumps Ahead of Winter Cuts
On a monthly basis, China saw its September growth rate nearly triple compared with that of the previous month.
China produced 80.8 MT in September, marking an increase of 7.5% compared with September 2017 production. Meanwhile, August production increased 2.7% from the August 2017 figure.
China’s crude steel production has breached the 80 MT mark in each of the last five months of reported data, last falling below that mark in April (76.7 MT).
Production figures in China bear monitoring in the coming winter months. Last month, Beijing announced a shift in its policy toward winter capacity cuts (aimed at tackling pollution in the country), ditching blanket bans and instead delegating capacity cut guidance to local authorities.
In September 2017, Chinese crude steel production hit 75.2 MT before falling to 72.4 MT in October and 66.2 MT in November.
U.S. on the Rise
U.S. production continues to rise, as the U.S. steel sector aims to breach the 80% capacity utilization mark. (As we noted previously, the U.S.’s capacity utilization rate hit 77.7% as of Oct. 20.)
The U.S. hit 7.3 MT in September, an increase of 9.0% compared to September 2017.
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Around the World
Other highlights from the monthly production report:
- France produced 1.3 MT, up 1.4% from September 2017.
- Japanese production dipped. Japan’s 8.4 MT in September marked a decrease of 2.4% compared to September 2017.
- Italy hit 2.2 MT, down 0.8% from September 2017.
- Spain’s production reached 1.3 MT, marking a 5.1% surge from the September 2017 total.
- Turkey saw its production drop 5.9% year over year in September, reaching 2.8 MT for the month.
- Brazilian production hit 3.0 MT, up 2.5% from September 2017.