The US Steel Wire Market to Begin Modest Growth

Basic Iron And Steel July 13, 2018
Author: Anna Sergeeva
Market Analyst

IndexBox has just published a new report "U.S. Steel Wire Market. Analysis And Forecast to 2025". Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

Market of Steel Wire Slightly Dropped over the Last Year

In 2016, in terms of wholesale prices, the market of steel wire stood at $6.8B. From 2008 to 2016, the U.S. steel wire market indicated a mixed trend pattern. It dropped by 37% to the bottom level of $5.5B followed by recovery over the next two years, however, it dropped again in 2012. Over the next four years the market stabilized, contracting slightly over the last year.

In the Medium Term, the US Steel Wire Market Is Expected to Begin Modest Growth

The automotive and metal product manufacturing industries, along with the construction sector, create most of the demand for steel wire. In the medium term, it is expected that an increase in business activity in the industrial and construction sectors of the US will contribute to the growth of the steel wire market. However, the U.S. steel wire market growth will restrain due to the more widespread use of alternative materials in the industries that previously used steel wire. 

Despite main constraints, domestic steel wire manufacturers are expected to cope with tough market conditions by improving operational efficiency and focusing on more on value-added products. The construction sector, which follows the overall economic recovery, continues to be one of the stable market segments. Pre-fabricated steel wire products such as reinforcement rebar grids for concrete are set to continue being in demand within the construction industry.

Construction industry in the U.S. continues to post robust gains, thereby constituting the main impetus to the steel wire market growth. Thus, the U.S. steel wire consumption is expected to begin a slight increase, rising by +1.0% (currently -2.9%) in the medium term.

Production of Steel Wire Failed to Recover

U.S. steel wire manufacturing was relatively stable from 2012 to 2016 with an overall marginal reduction. Despite a recovery from 2010-2011 after sharp fall in 2009, the U.S. steel wire manufacturers failed to reach the pre-recession production level achieved in 2008. In 2012, industry revenue dropped again and then remained relatively stable. 

Production of Steel Wire, Including Galvanized and Other Coated Wire Accounted for 53% of Total Output

Steel wire, including galvanized and other coated wire, made in plants that draw wire accounted for the highest share (53% in 2016) of U.S steel wire manufacturing, followed by noninsulated ferrous wire rope, cable, and fabricated wire rope assemblies (including lifting slings), made in plants that draw wire (11%), steel fencing and fence gates, made in plants that draw wire (9%), steel nails, staples, tacks, spikes, and brads, made in plants that draw wire (2%) and  ferrous wire cloth and other ferrous woven wire products, made in plants that draw wire (2%).

The most notable decline in U.S steel wire manufacturing from 2008 to 2016 were attained by steel nails, staples, tacks, spikes, and brads, made in plants that draw wire (-20.4% per year). This category remains the most pressured by imports. 

Canada and Mexico Were the Main Consumers of US Steel Wire Exports

The U.S. exported 164K tonnes or $448M of steel wire in 2016. A slump in 2009 was followed by an upward trend over the next two years, until the U.S. steel wire exports turned downward, declining steadily through to 2016. As for the exports in physical terms, they recorded similar dynamics over the period under review.

Canada (46% based on tonnes) and Mexico (35%) were the main destinations of U.S. steel wire exports in 2016. The share exported to Mexico increased (+18 percentage points), while the share sent to Canada reduced by 2 percentage point throughout the analyzed period.

China Softened Its Dominance in Terms of the U.S. Steel Wire Imports

The value of total U.S. steel wire imports totalled $1,904M in 2016. Despite a steady increase of imports in physical terms, it shrinked in terms of value in 2016 due to a decline in prices pressured by the previous downward trend of global steel prices. Intense competition from low-cost imports, particularly from China and Mexico, has increasingly constrained industry performance during this period. As a result, the share of imports in consumption has reached 28% in 2016. Foreign competition, particularly from emerging Asian markets, is expected to continue increasing through 2025 on the backdrop of strong dollar and moderate growth of downstream industries.

China ($540M in 2016), Canada ($246M), the Republic of Korea ($197M), Mexico ($143M), Taiwan ($140M) and Japan ($135M) were the main suppliers of steel wire to the U.S., together making up 74% of U.S. imports. Taiwan (+5.6% per year) was the fastest growing supplier from 2007 to 2016, while supplies from China and Canada decreased by -4.0% per year and -0.4% per year, respectively. Therefore, China saw its share reduced from 39% in 2007 to 28% in 2016, enabling other steel wire suppliers to increase their shares slightly.

Do you want to know more about the U.S. steel wire market? Get the latest trends and insight from our report. It includes a wide range of statistics on

  • steel wire market share
  • steel wire prices
  • steel wire industry
  • steel wire sales
  • steel wire import
  • steel wire export
  • steel wire market forecast
  • steel wire price forecast

Source: U.S. Steel Wire Market. Analysis And Forecast to 2025