This morning in metals news, the U.S. steel sector’s capacity utilization rate inched down another tenth of a percentage point, the U.S. raised its steel tariffs on Turkey to 50% and Chinese iron ore futures fell Tuesday.
U.S. Steel Capacity Utilization Rate Falls to 80.3%
The U.S. steel sector’s capacity utilization rate for the year through Oct. 12 reached 80.3%, down from 80.4% the previous week.
Steel production for the year through Oct. 12 reached 76.1 million tons, up 2.9% on a year-over-year basis.
Trump Raises Turkey Steel Tariffs
In yet another turn in U.S.-Turkey relations, President Donald Trump signed an executive order halting trade negotiations with Turkey and raising the tariff on Turkish steel imports to 50%.
Last year, the Trump administration raised its Section 232 steel tariff on Turkish steel to 50% amid a row over Turkey’s detention of American pastor Andrew Brunson; the U.S. eventually brought the tariff back down to the standard 25% rate.
However, after the U.S. announced a withdrawal of its forces from Syria, followed by Turkey’s military offensive in the region, Trump released a statement announcing the U.S. would sanction Turkish government officials and “any persons contributing to Turkey’s destabilizing actions in northeast Syria.”
Chinese Iron Ore Futures Down Amid Vale Production Uptick
Chinese iron ore futures dropped to an over two-week low amid Brazilian miner Vale’s announcement of elevated third-quarter production, Reuters reported.
The most-traded iron ore contract on the Dalian Commodity Exchange fell 1.2% on Tuesday, down to 644 yuan ($91.05) per ton, according to the report.