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US steel mill capability utilization falls below 70%


The US steel industry's capability utilization rate fell last week below 70% for the first time since the week ended January 30, American Iron and Steel Institute data showed Monday.

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In the week ended Saturday, US mills operated at 69.5% of their capability, down from 70.8% the week before. Mills produced 1.626 million st of raw steel last week, down 1.8% from 1.656 million st the week before.

US mills production last week was 3.6% less than in the same week last year, when mills made 1.687 million st while operating at 70.5% of their capability. Steel production has been down 1.3% year on year.

Southern mills cut production by 4.6% last week to 544,000 st, down from 570,000 st. Western mills reduced production by 4.2% to 69,000 st from 72,000 st.

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Midwest mills decreased production by 1.9% to 158,000 st from 161,000 st. Steel mills in the Northeast also reduced production by 1.5% to 202,000 st from 205,000 st.

Mills in the Great Lakes boosted production by 0.8% to 653,000 st last week, up from 648,000 st.

AISI determines its weekly raw steel production data based on weekly data from 50% of the domestic industry and estimates the rest using monthly production data.

--Estelle Tran,

--Edited by Derek Sands,