U.S. manufacturing activity, a key demand indicator for primary metals manufacturing, increased for the fourth consecutive month in March 2013, according to the Institute for Supply Management (ISM). Of the 18 industries monitored by the ISM, 14 reported growth in March. Industries of particular importance to primary metals manufacturers that reported growth included electrical equipment, appliances and components; fabricated metal products; and transportation equipment. Primary metals manufacturers themselves reported an increase in production in March from the month before.
Primary metals manufacturers may adjust production strategies in response to increases in industrial demand.
U.S. durable goods manufacturers’ shipments of primary metals, an indicator of primary metal production, rose 1.3 % in January 2013 compared to the same period in 2012.
U.S. steel mill product prices, which impact profitability for primary metal manufacturers, fell 9.7 % in February 2013 compared to the same month in 2012.
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