June 2012 | Steel Tracker
US market in disarray: Long Product Analysis
As the end of the month approaches the position remains unsettled – there is so little business being transacted that details of actual settlements are hard to discover.
The kindest interpretation of the US long products market at present is to judge that it is in disarray. The sub-sectors of the main market construction show signs of moving in opposite directions. Leading indicators of commercial non-residential building (planning applications that pre-date work by 9-12 months) lost more ground in May, falling by some 4% compared with the April level. Activity on big public sector projects, however, is set to increase, as planning totals were 1.5% higher than in April. The promising start at the beginning of the year has been confirmed as a clement weather effect that brought activity on early rather than revealed a rising trend. Prices are certainly in disarray. The recovery in US manufacturing which is so much to be welcomed in itself and for its promise (if not yet quite the fulfilment of that promise) for coil mills at a time when...
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