According to the Metals Activity Report from the Metals Service Center Institute, Rolling Meadows, Ill, US and Canadian service centers have returned to stronger growth rates of shipments of steel and aluminum products during May. These greater rates have essentially made up for the lower shipment numbers in April.
The total steel shipments made by the US increased by 20.1 percent from May 2010 resulting in 3.5 million tons shipped. Shipments for the first 5 months of 2011 also increased from the previous year by 20.3 percent with 17.28 million tons. Steel inventories were up 19 percent from stockpiles in 2010 totaling approximately 8.3 million tons and equal to a 2.4 month supply.
In Canada, metal centers increased their shipments by 14.1 percent during May with 528,300 tons. Shipments during the first 5 months were 2.7 million tons, which is a 14.4 percent increase from a year ago. Canadian steel inventories were up 10.4 percent from May 2010, totaling 1.54 million tons and equal to a 2.9 month supply.
US aluminum shipments from metal centers also increased in May 2011 totaling 127,400 tons, which is a 31.4 percent growth compared to the same month last year. Aluminum inventories at the end of May were reported to have a 29.4 percent increase, compared to the end of May 2010, with 362,900 tons and equal to a 2.8 month supply.
May shipments of aluminum from Canada amounted to 12,500 tons, which is 10.9 percent more than service center volume during May 2010. Shipments for the year increased 9.1 percent from the previous year, totaling 61,100. Inventories at the end of May were 6.9 percent below stockpiles from a year ago with 30,600 tons of aluminum and equal to a 2.5 month supply.