Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

I appreciate all the kind comments we have been receiving over the past few weeks. It appears the addition of Sandy Williams and Peter Wright are net positives for Steel Market Update and I am pleased with the work both of them are doing for SMU.

I received the following email from a large Midwest service center: I just want you to know that I feel SMU has “stepped it up” a notch in 2013. I am by no means saying the previous years have been weak but I have sensed a change, especially the last 3 – 4 weeks. I personally find value in the combination of market facts, your personal experience/opinion in the steel industry, business fundamentals, and education into the steel making process (today’s DRI article being the latest in something I knew little about but now see a clearer picture since reading your article). Thanks for the insight. I will continue to both read and contribute.

Education (knowledge) is a core part of Steel Market Update’s existence. It has been a core belief of mine that my success within the industry was tied to my ability to understand the products I was selling, what my customers did with them and through my relationships within my own company as well as our suppliers, processors and the end customer I was able to find niches that suited the company I was representing.

Our next workshop coming up is Managing Price Risk which deals with understanding the hot rolled coil futures and options markets as well as ferrous scrap. SMU believes every company associated with flat rolled steel products – whether hot rolled, cold rolled or coated – should at least have a basic understanding as to how the futures markets work. We believe as the market grows (and it is growing) the product will be used to complement existing buying and selling strategies. There are already a number of large service centers and end users using the products to their advantage. However, it is also necessary to understand the products and how they can work against you (or not have the value assumed). Whether you choose to use or ignore the futures market is up to you and your company and we hope we can help by providing a base knowledge course on the subject.

Our next Managing Price Risk workshop will be held in New York City on April 26th at the NYMEX building. You can find out more details about our program and how to register on our website: or by contacting our office at: 800-432-3475. SMU member companies receive special discounted rates and we also provide discounts for those companies who send more than one person.

We are also working on our next Steel 101: Introduction to Steelmaking and Market Fundamentals workshop which will be held in early June. We will have more about this in the next week or two.

SMU is also working on our Fall Steel Summit Conference – for the first time since we began our conference we will not be associated with METALCON this year. More details on our date and location will also be coming out in the next few weeks.

As always we thank you for the kind comments (tell your friends about us) and especially for your business. Both are truly appreciated.

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