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Steel Bulletin News October 2013

We have updated our steel prices graph so you can see more clearly how prices have moved over the last 5 years. The prices on our previous graph were correct as at January each year but the mid year peaks were not taken into account. It is interesting to note these mid year peaks especially in 2008 and 2010 and you can see clearly that steel prices over the last 2 years have settled down into a more stable pattern. Current prices are still 20% below 2008 peaks but 30% higher than the lows of 2009. Finally if you take into account the inflation in manufacturing costs the current price levels put all producer’s margins under a lot of pressure, we must conclude that if demand picks up to pre 2009 levels then prices will increase towards 2008 levels. Food for thought!


Prices are moving upwards as better economic news filters down. Merchant bar prices were increased again during September by another £15/t so increases over the last 3 months now total £50/t. Heavy section prices have also increased by £50/t with another £25/t being announced by Tata from October 6th. Hollow section prices remain static and have not been influenced by the movements in other product groups. As an overview these prices are being passed on into the general market place and we expect these prices to, at least, remain at their current levels throughout 2013, although do not be surprised if they go up again. If you need more up to date information please contact our sales department on 01845 528200.


Summer shutdowns have reduced mill stock levels to a very low level and the previous habit of being able to replenish stock within 7/10 days no longer applies. Some popular sizes are not rolling until December/ January 2014 and these may be deferred if the mills find something more profitable to produce. Heavy sections have been affected by importers not delivering to schedule and this has stretched the lead times on some sections. The tight supply will fuel the price increases mentioned above. We would advise caution when quoting and please do not automatically assume all sizes will be available ex stock.


With our 40th anniversary open day on 5th October we are busy tidying the warehouses and offices as well as blowing up the bouncy castle. We look forward to welcoming about 200 guests for a memorable day out. In addition we held a ‘Macmillan World’s Biggest Coffee Morning’ charitable event, more details and pictures of the scrumptious cakes are here on our website. Finally we would like to welcome Lee Harrison and Megan Knowlson to our administration department; we wish them well in their new careers. Thank you for reading this and if you have any comments about Tomrods Ltd or our website please e-mail the undersigned at johnt@tomrods.co.uk.