This Morning in Metals: U.S. Steel Imports Down 7.8% Through April

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This morning in metals, U.S. imports of foreign steel have dropped 7.8% through the first four months of the year, the Department of Commerce announced changes to its countervailing duty process and the copper price is on its way to its sixth consecutive weekly drop.

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U.S. Steel Imports Down

U.S. imports of steel for the year through April dropped 7.8%, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI).

Total imports for the first four months of the year reached 11.5 million tons. In April, however, imports reached 3.3 million tons, up 45.5% from the previous month.

DOC Amends Countervailing Duty Process

The U.S. Department of Commerce announced changes to its countervailing duty process with respect to “countries that act to undervalue their currency relative to the dollar.”

“This change puts foreign exporters on notice that the Department of Commerce can countervail currency subsidies that harm U.S. industries,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a prepared statement. “Foreign nations would no longer be able to use currency policies to the disadvantage of American workers and businesses. This proposed rulemaking is a step toward implementing President Trump’s campaign promise to address unfair currency practices by our trading partners.”

Copper Price Heads for Sixth Straight Week of Losses

The copper price has been on a steady decline in recent months, in part weighed down by trade tensions between the U.S. and China.

According to Reuters, the LME copper price is headed for its sixth consecutive week of losses.

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Earlier this month, trade talks took a hit when President Donald Trump opted to raise tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods, after which China retaliated with tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. goods.

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