Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

For union watchers out there, the Baltimore Brew broke a story today regarding the International United Steelworkers placing USW Local 9477 in “administratorship” with the intention of removing all but one of the local union officials. There is a question as to what will happen with the assets of USW Local 9477 which owned a building worth approximately $2.1 million and has a reported $400,000 in cash assets from union dues collections. Both Local 9477 and the International President, Leo Gerard, had made some dubious decisions regarding ownership of what was once Bethlehem Sparrows Point. It was the union leadership which picked Esmark over CSN (first at Wheeling-Pittsburgh and then at Sparrows Point), fought Severstal when they wanted to bring Russian slabs to help save the SP plant and then approved RG Steel…

The next battle for the USW is in Canada – The contract at U.S. Steel Lake Erie Works – sister plant to Hamilton – which took an eight month strike/lockout the last time the contract came up – is up for renewal in mid-April. USS CEO John Surma did state in the last earnings conference call that they did not expect any issues with this contract renewal…

On Wednesday and Thursday of this week I will be in Columbus, Mississippi as we conduct our next Steel 101: Introduction to Steelmaking & Market Fundamentals workshop. The class sold out and we actually had to turn a few people away as we try to keep the workshop to a manageable size to maximize our effectiveness as instructors and also to provide a quality experience on the mill tour. Once again, I would like to thank Severstal North America for allowing us access to their Columbus, MS mini-mill. We are looking forward to touring the 3.4 million ton-per-year mill.

We are working on our next Steel 101 workshop which we hope to hold in the late spring – details to follow.

Our next Managing Price Risk workshop – which is for active buyers and sellers of steel and/or ferrous scrap – has been confirmed for New York City on April 26, 2013 at the NYMEX building (CME Group) across from 1 World Trade Center in lower Manhattan. Andre Marshall of Crunch Risk, LLC and the CME Group will be working with me on this workshop dedicated to understanding the basics regarding hot rolled coil and ferrous scrap futures and HRC options trading. Registration is open and available on our website or you are welcome to contact our office at 800-432-3475 either with question or to register. Discounts are available for SMU member companies as well as for those who wish to bring more than one person to the workshop. This is an excellent workshop to bring the customer and supplier…

Fingers crossed it looks like good weather on Wednesday and Thursday in Columbus, MS and there is nothing better than spring in New York City (did I mention our meeting room overlooks the Statue of Liberty…).

On Monday we have a meeting regarding an update on the progress of our new website. The beast is slowly coming to life – we have a number of months of hard work left in the project.

As always your business is truly appreciated.

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