Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

First, ferrous scrap prices are rising for delivery during the month of April. However, our sources are telling us that the increases are not at the $20-$30 per gross ton suggested a few days ago. The mills are playing hardball and the sense is that prices will drop in May, so dealers are taking what they can get now.

We understand Chicago prime scrap is up $10, and $20 on shred and heavy melt (HMS). In the South, prices at the flat rolled mills are reported by our sources to be up $15 on shred and $20 on primes. We will have more about April ferrous scrap prices in Sunday’s issue of Steel Market Update.

I received a call this afternoon from one of our readers who is also a fan of our Steel Summit Conference. He told me that he attended another conference earlier this year and was disappointed in the repetition he heard from speaker to speaker. There was much praise about our past conferences and an appreciation of the agenda we are working on for this year’s event, which will be Aug. 27-29 in Atlanta.

As we put our conference together, we take great pains to make sure that we do not “over-do” a particular topic. We know that there is interest in the Section 232 tariffs, and it is an important subject to cover. However, there are equally challenging issues facing the industry, such as the lack of trucks and rail cars, and it is important that transportation issues be discussed. There are also technology changes, commodity issues, a need to hear and understand pricing forecasts and a need to understand supply and demand. Trade and the negotiations that are ongoing with NAFTA, South Korea, China and elsewhere will be critically important by the end of August. We are also facing a mid-term election that may change the way government acts during 2019. We plan on addressing all of these issues with high-quality speakers like Ron Insana of CNBC, Dr. Alan Beaulieu of ITR Economics, John Anton and Timna Tanners, John Ferriola and Kirk Reich, Lewis Leibowitz and Grant Aldonas, Gisbert Ruhl and Steve Pratt. If you want to learn more about who these people are, as well as others who will be addressing our attendees, please go to . You can also register for the conference online or you are welcome to contact our offices at 772-932-7538.

As we are about to go to print, the latest news is President Trump is threatening tariffs on another $100 billion of Chinese goods.

It will be interesting to see if President Trump’s threats of a trade war with the Chinese will bring them to the bargaining table. One of the cards they have in their hand is they are buyers of a lot of our debt….

As always, your business is truly appreciated by all of us here at Steel Market Update.

John Packard, Publisher

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