Based on the Commerce Department’s most recent 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 November totaled 2,557,000 net tons (NT). This was a 6% decrease from the 2,721,000 permit tons recorded in October and up 0.7% from the October preliminary imports total of 2,540,000 NT. Import permit tonnage for finished steel in November was 2,014,000 NT, down 2% from the preliminary imports total of 2,059,000 NT in October. November 2012 total and finished steel import permit tons would annualize at 33,581,000 NT and 26,130,000 NT, up 18% and 20%, respectively, vs. the 28,515,000 NT and 21,835,000 NT imported in 2011. The estimated finished steel import market share in November was 24%, and it is 24% through 11 months of 2012.
Finished steel imports with large increases in November permits vs. the October preliminary include reinforcing bars (up 45%), hot rolled bars (up 39%), plates in coils (up 36%), sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 25%) and cold rolled sheets (up 17%). Major products with significant year-to-date (YTD) increases vs. the same period in 2011 include reinforcing bars (up 55%), line pipe (up 40%), sheets and strip galvanized hot dipped (up 38%), oil country goods (up 28%), sheets and strip all other metallic coatings (up 23%) and cut lengths plates (up 22%).