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FACT SHEET

STEEL IMPORTS FOR MARCH 2002
DECREASED 39 PERCENT FROM FEBRUARY 2002

April 30, 2002

Newly released preliminary government figures covering steel imports for the month of March 2002 show that steel imports decreased 39 percent from February 2002 levels.

Total Steel Mill Products                                         

The preliminary data released today show that overall steel imports in March 2002 decreased 39 percent compared to February 2002.  The decrease in March=s total amount of steel imports was due primarily to a decrease in imports of semi-finished steel, corrosion resistant steel, rebar, and tin plate.  March 2002 imports of finished steel products decreased 30 percent compared to February 2002, and imports of semi-finished steel fell 58 percent.

March 2002 imports of steel mill products were down 21 percent compared to March 2001.  March 2002 imports of finished steel was down 20 percent compared to March 2001, and semi-finished steel products were also down 27 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of steel mill products were up 18 percent compared to the same period in 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of finished steel were up 7 percent compared to the same period last year, while imports of semi-finished steel are up 57 percent. 

Hot‑Rolled Steel

March 2002 imports of hot‑rolled steel decreased 47 percent from their February 2002 levels and were down 15 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of hot-rolled steel were up 0.78 percent compared to the same period last year.  These products were the subject of antidumping and countervailing duty investigations.

Cold‑Rolled Steel

March 2002 imports of cold‑rolled steel decreased 38 percent compared to February 2002 levels and were down 47 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of cold-rolled steel were down 16 percent compared to the same period last year.  These products are the subject of current antidumping and countervailing duty investigations.

Cut‑to‑Length Plate

March 2002 imports of cut‑to‑length plate increased 12 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were up 108 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of cut-to-length plate were up 54 percent compared to the same period last year.  

Corrosion-Resistant Steel

March 2002 imports of corrosion-resistant steel decreased 57 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports of these products were down 18 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of corrosion-resistant steel were up 50 percent compared to the same period last year.

Wire Rod

March 2002 imports of wire rod increased 147 percent compared to February 2002 levels but were down 6 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of wire rod were up 16 percent compared to the same period last year.  These products are the subject of current antidumping and countervailing duty investigations.

Heavy Structurals

March 2002 imports of heavy structurals increased 59 percent from their February 2002 level and were up 38 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of heavy structurals were down 22 percent compared to the same period last year. 

Rebar

March 2002 imports of rebar fell 84 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports of these products were down 67 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of rebar were up 25 percent compared to the same period last year.

Hot-Rolled Bar

March 2002 imports of hot-rolled bar decreased 23 percent compared to February 2002 and were down 13 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of hot-rolled bar were up 14 percent compared to the same period last year.

Standard Pipe

March 2002 imports of standard pipe decreased 53 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports of these products were down 39 percent compared to March 2001, and January to March 2002 imports of standard pipe were up 12 percent compared to the same period last year. 

Oil Country Tubular Goods (OCTG)

March 2002 imports of OCTG decreased 13 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports of these products were down 69 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March 2002 imports of OCTG were down 46 percent compared to the same period last year. 

Semi-Finished Steel

March 2002 imports of semi-finished steel decreased 58 percent compared to February 2002 and were down 27 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of semi-finished steel were up 57 percent compared to the same period last year.  Imports of these products are used by U.S. steel companies to produce finished products.

EXPANDED BREAKOUT BY GRADE

Since May 2001 the U.S. Census Bureau (Census) expanded its early release of steel import data to include separate breakouts for carbon, alloy and stainless steel in each of the product categories.  The following lists some of the highlights from these new breakouts:

Carbon Steel

Overall imports of carbon steel products in March 2002 decreased 40 percent from their February 2002 levels and were down 22 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of these products were up 18 percent compared to the same period last year.

Carbon Hot-Rolled Steel - Imports of carbon hot-rolled steel in March 2002 decreased 49 percent compared to February 2002 and were down 16 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March imports of these products were down 1 percent compared to the same period last year.

Carbon Cold-Rolled Steel - Imports of carbon cold-rolled steel in March 2002 decreased 44 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were down 47 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March imports of these products were down 16 percent compared to the same period last year.

Alloy Steel

Overall imports of alloy steel products in March 2002 decreased 37 percent compared to February 2002 and were down 24 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of these products were up 22 percent compared to the same period last year. 

Tool Steel - Imports of tool steel in March 2002 decreased 33 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were down 39 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March imports of these products were down 22 percent compared to the same period last year.

Stainless Steel                       

Overall imports of stainless steel products in March 2002 decreased 15 percent from their February 2002 level and were down 0.57 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March 2002 imports of these products were up 9 percent compared to the same period last year.

Stainless Hot-Rolled Steel - Imports of stainless hot-rolled steel in March 2002 decreased 53 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were up 11 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March imports of these products were up 70 percent compared to the same period last year.

Stainless Cold-Rolled Steel - Imports of stainless cold-rolled steel in March 2002 increased 6 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were down 0.38 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March imports of these products were down 2 percent compared to the same period last year.

Stainless Hot-Rolled Bars - Imports of stainless hot-rolled bars in March 2002 decreased 29 percent compared to February 2002 and were down 14 percent compared to March 2001 levels.  January to March imports of these products were up 6 percent compared to the same period last year.                                                                                

Stainless Cold-Finished Bars - Imports of stainless cold-finished bars in March 2002 decreased 20 percent compared to February 2002.  March 2002 imports were down 45 percent compared to March 2001.  January to March imports of these products were down 24 percent compared to the same period last year.

These figures are being provided on an expedited basis and will continue to be released on this schedule each month.  The data released today are preliminary and are likely to change somewhat between now and the release of the final March statistics next month.  April 2002 preliminary figures will be released on May 29, 2002.

Note: Census issued revisions to certain country totals within product categories for 1998 and the first six months of 1999.  Only individual country totals within certain product categories were affected by these revisions; the overall totals for these product categories were not affected. These revisions have been incorporated into this fact sheet and the accompanying tables.  Detailed reports containing the revisions to the data for 1998 and the period February to June 1999 are available on the Census Bureau web site.

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