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Rising prices boost AK Steel, U.S. Steel stocks

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NEW YORK, June 9 (Reuters) – Shares of some major U.S. steel companies rose on Tuesday and analysts attributed it to rising prices for the flat-rolled steel products made by those manufacturers.

In afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange, AK Steel Holdings’ stock was 8.7 percent higher at $18.93, while U.S. Steel Corp rose 5.7 percent to $37.08.

Other steel company stocks were almost flat, although Steel Dynamics was up 3.7 percent on the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones Iron and Steel Index was 3.7 percent higher.

Analyst Michelle Applebaum of Steel Market Intelligence in Chicago said her latest indicator of global flat-rolled steel prices showed they were at their highest level since last June.

‘They (AK Steel and U.S. Steel) are the biggest flat-rolled players and flat-rolled prices globally are on the way up.’

Applebaum’s Advance/Decliner Index, which tracks the ratio between price increases and decreases, was at 77 percent last week. A reading above 50 percent means there are more increases than decreases and generally bodes well for pricing trends, she said.

Steel prices had been falling since last September, as the economic downturn dried up demand for steel and most manufacturers cut production by more than half.

(Reporting by Steve James, editing by Matthew Lewis) Keywords: STEEL/SHARES

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US mills file trade case against Chinese OCTG

In a widely anticipated move, antidumping and countervailing duty petitions against imports of Chinese OCTG have been filed with the US government. Seven US pipe producers and the United Steelworkers union (USW) filed the cases alleging that Chinese OCTG producers have been benefiting from enormous government subsidies – and that dumping margins range from 40% to 100%.

Source: Steel Business Briefing

New Shelving Clip Style Guide

SJF just published a shelving clip style guide for use by anybody needing to identify popular shelving clip styles.  The shelving clip guide makes a good compliment to our already widely used and very popular rack style guide. This guide features pictures of many major brands of shelf clips including Borroughs, Edsal, Lyon, Penco, Republic and many more.

Please take a look at this new handy reference and let us know what you think with a comment below.

Buy used equipment without being taken to the cleaners

SJF’s very own Stafford Sterner recently penned an article for Material Handling Management Magazine.  This article gives you 7 real-world, usable tips for purchasing used material handling equipment.

Click Here (opens in a new window) to read the article on SJF’s Article Repository, and leave a comment here if you enjoyed the article.  Let us know what you think.

Chinese scrap market maintains its slight rising trend

Over the past week, the Chinese scrap market saw a slight rising trend, with a further ascension expected in the coming period against the tight availability of scrap supply. However, the relatively soft performance lately observed in the finished steel market is likely to exert a significant impact on the scrap market

Source: SteelOrbis Shanghai  – For the latest in steel news & trends subscribe to SteelOrbis News at

US demand too weak to prop up steel prices against falling scrap

With US shredded scrap prices dropping by up to  $30/long ton this month, there is a very good chance that US rebar prices will fall right along with them.

Given the ongoing weak demand in the US rebar market, it is quite likely that this time, domestic mills may opt to  lower rebar prices in step with the decreases in scrap.

Meanwhile, Turkish mills are still pretty hungry for business and they are seeing falling scrap costs as well. However, if US prices do come down another notch as expected, Mexican rebar imports, along with imports from other sources, will most likely come down by at least as much in order to stay competitive with US material. Source: SteelOrbis  – – For the latest in steel news & trends subscribe to SteelOrbis News at

Interlake Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

NAPERVILLE, Ill.—Interlake Material Handling, a large long time  manufacturer of steel storage racks and a division of United Fixtures, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The news was reported by a  newspaper in Sumter, S.C. The newspaper quoted  a company manager who said the filing was a preemptive measure that would allow the company to restructure.

“This is not a liquidation,” Jones said. “The biggest advantage to us is that it allows us to restructure our debt. It will allow us to obtain working capital in order to continue our operations and put us in a better position to be acquired by another company.”

Although there is no word yet about a final deal, Interlake is reportedly in talks with a potential buyer. “We have a buyer with a very strong balance sheet,” said Jones. “The sale has not been finalized yet, however.”

Jones also said the bankruptcy will not lead to a closure of the Sumter plant and predicted a bright future for Interlake in Sumter, S.C.

“This is a very positive thing for us,” he says. “If bankruptcy can be seen in a positive light, this definitely is. And, while I can’t speak for the future, especially if the company is purchased, at this time, we have no plans for further reductions in personnel.”

Interlake Material Handling Bidding Procedures Approved for Assets

Yesterday, the bankruptcy court entered an order approving bidding procedures for substantially all of the assets of Interlake Material Handling, Inc. and its affiliates.  The court also approved the proposed break-up fee and expense reimbursement for the stalking horse bidders for the assets, Mecalux USA, Inc. and Mecalux Mexico S.A. de C.V., which would be paid in the event that those parties are not the winning bidders for the assets at the conclusion of the bidding process.

The order attaches the approved procedures for other parties to provide competing bids for the assets.  In the event that qualified competing bids are received, an auction is scheduled to be held on March 4, 2009 in Wilmington, Delaware.  Source: netDockets Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy Blog

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