Steel Shipments Rise in Canada, Aluminum in U.S.

Inventories fall below 3-month supply levels

The Metals Service Center Institute’s first report for 2010 found steel shipments from U.S. metals centers totaled 2.58 million tons, or 0.9% below January 2009 levels. As the latest month closed, U.S. centers held inventories of about 6.26 million tons, 26.2% less than the January 2009 inventory total. That is equal to a 2.4-month supply of steel in stock at current shipping rates.

Centers in Canada shipped 440,000 tons in January, an impressive 9.2% above January 2009 steel shipments. Canadian inventories at the end of January totaled 1.18 million tons, a 2.7-month supply.

Shipments of aluminum products from U.S. service centers amounted 93,600 tons in January. Those centers finished the month with 254,400 tons in stock, equal to a 2.7-month supply at current shipping rates.

In Canada, service centers shipped 10,600 tons of aluminum during January, roughly 5.7% less than their year-earlier shipment total. They held inventories of 30,300 tons of aluminum as the month ended, 9.2% less than at the end of January 2009. At the current level of shipments, the Canadian centers have a 2.9-month supply of aluminum in stock.

The MSCI’s Metals Activity Report is based on data reported by service centers in the United States and Canada.

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