ArcelorMittal SA, the world’s largest steelmaker, said demand was recovering and it would increase production. The company is looking at restarting production at some plants to meet initial signs that the steel slump is ending. However, ArcelorMittal warned that a full recovery would be slow. U.S. Steel, which has already recalled 900 laid-off steelworkers to resume production in Ontario and Illinois and plans to restart an idled Minnesota operation that makes iron-ore pellets used for steelmaking, said that it expects shipments and operating rates to increase in the current quarter.
According to MEPS International Ltd., a U.S.-based steel consultant group, flat-rolled steel is rebounding in nearly every developing country in the world, leading to higher steel prices.
Steel prices rose 13% in July, which marked the first gain in a year, after distributors began restocking their inventories. According to Purchasing magazine, the average price of hot-rolled steel sheet increased to $430/ton from $380/ton in June. Cold-rolled sheet climbed 11% to $517/ton.