Steel Plate Prices Edge Upward in the US Market as Nucor Hikes Prices
Steel Plate Prices Edge Upward in the US Market as Nucor Hikes Prices

Steel Plate Prices Edge Upward in the US Market as Nucor Hikes Prices

  • 10-Jan-2023 6:17 PM
  • Journalist: Jacob Kutchner

Steel Plate prices in the US market stagnated in the week ending January 6, 2023, amidst stable scrap prices and mixed downstream demand. Nucor, a US steel plate manufacturer, raised their steel sheet prices this week by USD 55/MT on Monday. According to market participants, this is the second week in a row that Nucor has increased  Steel sheet prices by approximately USD 55/MT over the last two months. Nucor previously raised Steel Plate prices by USD 66/MT on November 30, 2022. However, Nucor did not specify a minimum price target for its Steel Plate.

According to our sources, Nucor raised its Steel sheet prices after the news broke that the US scrap market continues to deal at a higher cost. In the Eastern market, US scrap prices increased by $60 per gross tonne (gt) for prime grades and $30/gt for obsolete grades. Some scrap dealers are attempting to raise obsolete costs by $40/gt but are encountering resistance from the Steel manufacturers. As per dealers, a scrap price increase in January would be the second consecutive month of growth after seven months of declines.

Many steel market participants support hikes in steel sheet prices as Steel Plate prices fell by 57% in 2022. On the other hand, some participants are concerned that Steel Plate prices are rising due to a cost-push rather than increased demand, leading them to believe that the price increase will be temporary.

North American steelmakers Nucor and ArcelorMittal Dofasco raised Steel Plate prices in the fourth quarter of 2022, joining other major manufacturers. According to our sources, Nucor, an Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) steelmaker, raised its Steel Plate price by USD 66/MT on new orders beginning January 1, 2023. After Cleveland-Cliffs and US Steel raised prices in December, major market participants postponed purchasing activity and opted for a wait-and-see approach until Nucor announced its price increase. Following Nucor's price increases for Steel Plates, Canadian integrated steelmaker Stelco increased its steel sheet prices by USD 50/MT on November 29.

ChemAnalyst forecasts that prices for Steel Plates will decrease over the coming weeks in the US market due to the steady supply-demand situation. If the market participants agree to the increases in Steel Plate prices set by key manufacturers, there is a chance of further price hikes. However, market players are currently not showing signs of opting for higher costs, increasing the chances for temporary hikes in Steel Plate costs.

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