US steel capacity utilization reaches 82.9%
This morning in the metals news: the capacity utilization rate of the American steel sector rose to 82.9% last week; Cleveland cliffs will demolish the site of the old AK steel Ashland mill; and, finally, the Energy Information Administration predicts an increase in natural gas prices in the coming year.
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US steel capacity utilization increases to 82.9%
The capacity utilization rate of the US steel sector reached 82.9% last week, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) reported.
Production last week totaled 1.84 million net tonnes, up 0.3% week-over-week. Total weekly production also marked a 44.6% year-over-year increase.
For the year to date (through June 19), US steel mills produced 43.22 million net tonnes of crude steel, up 14.2% year-over-year.
Cleveland-Cliffs to demolish Ashland plant site
According to several reports, Cleveland-Cliffs will demolish AK Steel’s Ashland plant site.
Most of the plant’s operations had been inactive since 2015. Cleveland-Cliffs completed the acquisition of AK Steel in March 2020.
Rising natural gas prices
Natural gas prices are expected to rise this year and through 2022, the Energy Information Administration reported.
“In our June 2021 Short-term energy outlook (STEO), we predict that the prices of natural gas in the United States will increase in 2021 and 2022 compared to the prices of 2020 due to the expected growth in natural gas consumption and natural gas exports which exceeds the expected growth. of production and imports, ”the EIA said. “We also forecast the 2021 Henry Hub natural gas spot price to average $ 3.07 per million British thermal units (MMBtu), an increase of $ 1.04 / MMBtu from lows. 2020 records.
“Increased natural gas exports to the United States and the consumption of all other natural gas consuming sectors, but power generation, are behind the high Henry Hub spot prices reflected in the STEO. High natural gas prices set in February 2021 have increased the trajectory of 2021 annual average prices, making 2021 the peak of our forecast. “
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