Based on the Commerce Department’s most recent Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis data, the American Iron and Steel Institute reported that steel import applications for February totaled 1.62 million net tons (NT), a 29% decrease from the permit tons recorded in January and a 31% decrease from the January preliminary imports total of 2.34 million NT. In February, the largest finished steel import permit applications for offshore countries were for China (307,000 NT), South Korea (148,00 NT), Japan (102,000 NT), Turkey (97,000 NT) and Brazil (59,000 NT).

Cumulative tonnage for the top three offshore suppliers (China, South Korea and Japan) accounted for 37% of all finished imports in February, which was one-third more than the amount from NAFTA countries. Major finished steel import products that registered increases in February from January include Plates in Coils (up 54%) and Standard Rails (up 19%).