Nucor intends to hike wire rod transaction prices in the US effective with new orders Jan. 13, the company said in a letter to customers.
The steelmaker announced an increase of $110/st on all wire rod transaction prices, with price-protection for existing orders shipped by Jan. 31. All wire rod diameters below 0.25 inch would continue to be subject to a $10/st size extra, according to the letter.
Evraz NA had also raised its wire rod pricing by $90/st, according to a buy-side source. At the time of writing, Platts had not received a price increase announcement letter from Evraz.
Later in the day, Liberty Steel followed with an increase of $110/st on all wire rod transaction prices, effective with shipments Feb. 1.
A main reason for the announcements was a large increase in shredded scrap pricing, which rose by about $90/lt during the January scrap buy. The move marks the third round of price increases in as many months. Wire rod producers had previously raised their prices by $95-$105/st in early December after significant increases in shredded scrap pricing.
Initial reactions to the latest price increase announcements were mixed.
“I’m not sure it’s justified considering the sharp rise in scrap prices,” said a distributor. “They are just piling on at this point.”
Amid tight availability and extended lead times, a price increase larger than the scrap price increase was to be expected, according to a buyer. “Those conditions warrant margin expansion,” he added.
S&P Global Platts’ latest weekly wire rod assessment was $745-$765/st on Jan. 8, representing a 20-month high.