Monday, December 23, 2013 at 6:10 AM
There's been a notable uptick in U.S. steel shipments within the last quarter of the year, as well as steady steel production that includes the Great Lakes region. ideastream's Brian Bull reports:
Late last week, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported that its October figures showed domestic mills shipping nearly 8.3 million net tons. That’s an increase of more than 11 percent from October 2012 figures.
The AISI also reports that for the Great Lakes region – which includes Ohio – there’s been nearly 32.5 million net tons of steel produced to date in 2013. That puts it on track to closely match 2012’s production total of 33.5 million.
Larry Kavanagh is President of the Steel Market Institute. He says steel makers are particularly buoyed by new standards for fuel efficiency in cars, which means lighter, but highly durable grades being developed. Kavanagh says many of the new forms of steel are rivaling aluminum in strength and cost.
“And then of course, we have the next waves of steel that are even better than these,coming behind them, so we feel very good about our ability to remain the material of choice in the automotive market.”
Car makers such as GM, Honda, and Ford – all with plants in Ohio – have also been experiencing strong sales this year.
Another trend that’s been boosting steel is shale drilling and exploration, which has seen steadily growing interest in Ohio and neighboring states across the northeast region.
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