At the end of 2023, HRC prices in the country peaked at about $1,100/t

Prices for hot-rolled steel continue to fall in the US domestic market, with the price of hot rolled coil (HRC) dropping to $800 per short tonne in early March. This was reported by World Steel Dynamics.

At the end of last year, hot rolled coil prices in the US peaked at around $1100/tonne according to various indices and remained stable for most of January 2024. However, negative dynamics prevailed, which led to a further drop in HRC prices to $840-880/t. According to WSD’s market sources, large enterprises are currently purchasing HRC coils at $720-750 per short ton for order volumes of more than 5 thousand tons.

In terms of demand conditions, the automotive sector started the year at a high pace, but most other indicators for industrial production, manufacturing and construction point to a slow start.

«No one market segment is in a particularly difficult position, but economic activity is soft at best,» WSD noted.

However, World Steel Dynamics believes that the US flat steel market does not face significant oversupply risks, despite the commissioning of new capacity in the current and 2025.

At the same time, a regional survey conducted by Headwall Partners showed that the vast majority of North American steel company executives expect hot-rolled coil prices to average $800-1000 per short ton in 2024.

As GMK Center reported earlier, 62% of respondents to a WSD survey conducted on LinkedIn predicted that hot rolled coil prices in the United States would be less than $1,000 per short tonne by the end of the first quarter of this year, while 14% predicted that they would exceed this figure. The study noted that producers expect stable demand and prices in the future, but steel futures are trading significantly lower. According to one commentator, mills can accept orders at prices below $1,000 per short ton depending on their volume.