Based on preliminary Census Bureau data, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported on March 28 that the U.S. imported a total of 2,689,000 net tons (NT) of steel in February, including 2,051,000 NT of finished steel (down 5 percent and 7 percent, respectively, from January final data).
Annualized total and finished steel imports in 2011 would be 33.0 and 25.5 million NT, respectively, up 16 percent and 17 percent, respectively versus 2011, according to AISI.
Finished steel import market share in February was an estimated 23 percent. Import market share thru 2 months of this year is 23 percent, up from the 22 percent for full year 2012.
Key finished steel products with significant import increases in February 2012 compared to January are wire rods (up 77 percent), sheets and strip galvanized hot dipped (up 39 percent), plates in coils (up 15 percent) and hot rolled bars (up 11 percent), according to an AISI report.
Major products with significant YTD import increases vs. the same period last year include plates in coils (up 85 percent), reinforcing bar (up 79 percent), sheet and strip all other metallic coated (up 81 percent), heavy structural shapes (up 65 percent) and sheet and strip galvanized hot dipped (up 65 percent), according to AISI.