The worldrsquos steelmakers generally improved their performance from September to October though the dominant producer mdash China mdash curtailed its output for the month World Steel Assn.

The world’s steelmakers generally improved their performance from September to October, though the dominant producer — China — curtailed its output for the month.

Global Steel Production Barely Increased in October

China tonnage -0.5% U.S. production +8.7% Worldwide utilization down to 77.5%

Global raw steel production inched up less than 1% from September to October, with output declining in China but rising in other large producer nations. Total worldwide production was 134,262,000 metric tons, 0.9% more than the revised total for September.

The latest month’s results are 6.6% higher than the October 2012 figure, and brings the year-to-date total to 1,321,006 metric tons, 3.2% higher than the ten-month total for last year.

The World Steel Association records production totals in 65 member countries, with a monthly summary report of production and capacity utilization for “crude” (or raw) steel, the primary output of electric arc furnaces and basic oxygen furnaces, prior to metallurgical refining and casting into semi-finished products, such as slabs, blooms, or billets. The report totals the global carbon and carbon alloy steel output; stainless steels and other specialty alloy steels are not included.

China, the world’s largest steel producing nation, produces 65.1 million metric tons during October, -0.5% from the September total, but up 9.2% compared to October 2012. The country’s annual total is now 652,480 million metric tons, 8.3% higher than the January-October 2012 total.

In Japan, raw steel production rose 2.5% from September to October, reaching 9.5 million metric tons. The result was 7.7% higher than the October 2012 total, and the year-to-date total is now 91,053 million metric tons, 2.0% more than last year’s ten-month total.

South Korea’s raw steel production was 5.9 million metric tons in October 2013, 14.6% more than the September result, and 5.2% more than the October 2012 total. Korean output for 2013 stands -5.4% compared to the total for January-October 2012.

EU, U.S. Rebound

Total raw steel output for the European Union (27 countries) was 14.7 million metric tons during October, up 2.8% from September and 4.0% from October 2012. The ten-month total for 2013 is 138,406 million metric tons, which is -3.4% versus the same period for 2012.

Germany produced 3.8 million metric tons in October, 4.2% more than in September, and 1.9% more than in October 2012. The country’s annual total stands at 35.5 million metric tons, -1.7% off the pace set for 2012.

In Italy, October production rose 4.0% from September, to 2.2 million metric tons. That total is -10.1% down from October 2012, and brings the year’s total 20.1 million metric tons, -13.7% less than Italy’s January-October 2012 total.

U.K. steel production fell -2.0% from September to October, to 1.05 million metric tons. That result is 17.9% greater than October 2012 output, and the year-to-date total of 9,861 million metric tons is 23.2% greater than the comparable result for 2012.

Russia produced 5.7 million metric tons in October, up 1.2% from September, but down -1.5% from October 2012. The year-to-date total there is 57,649 million metric tons, -2.7% compared to the ten-month result for last year.

In the U.S., steelmakers produced 7,390 million metric tons during October, rising 8.7% from September and bringing the 2013 total to 72,687 million metric tons – off the 2012 pace by -2.8%.

In addition, the World Steel Assn. reported raw steel capacity utilization for the 65 countries in October 2013 was 77.5%, which is down from 79.3% during September, but up from 75.0% recorded for October 2012.

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