US Standard Pipe Market Faces Imports, HRC Price Uncertainly

June 17, 2011 in Industry Trends, News & Articles by

Sources are divided on the effect recent hotrolled coil increases will have on US carbon standard pipe pricing, though inexpensive Asian imports continue to weigh on the market.

Market sources in the midwestern and southeastern US report domestic pricing for ASTM A53 black ERW pipe to be between $1,200-1,250/short ton, fob mill, while imports range from $950-$1,050/s.t. Import countries of origin for the lower end of the scale include India, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam, while Korean import offers dominate the upper end of the scale, Steel Business Briefing understands.

“The pricing depends entirely on the quality of the supplier,” one midwestern trader said.

A trader in the southeast pointed out that lead times are another factor to weigh in import pricing. “There are always cheaper deals somewhere out there,” he said.

The source added that spot domestic HRC prices – currently in the range of $760-780/s.t – possess tenuous strength. “HRC can’t stay up too much longer,” he said.

A midwestern source concurred. “I am not sure the flatrolled increase has been firmly established; the jury is still out on that,” the source said. “Plus, it’s always tougher for the tubers to make increases.”

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