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APRIL MARKET UPDATE – Stainless Steel pricing, Nickel Market recap & Supply Chain update

Stainless Steel Surcharges: You may have noticed some sharp increases in stainless steel pricing over the past 6 months. The reason is that stainless steel surcharges have increased steadily over the past 6 months with 304L increasing by 28% and 316L by 34%. Stainless surcharges make up a large portion of the overall price/pound of stainless steel.

Nickel Pricing: The reason we are seeing such a sharp increase in stainless surcharges and overall stainless steel pricing is that nickel prices increased by 23% from October to February. Increasing nickel prices did slow down over the month of March, dropping 5% over February for a total increase of 17% over the past 6 months.

Supply Chain: The global demand for some goods and the impact of the Corona Virus on manufacturing is causing issues in some industries supply chain. Some countries have “locked down” their economies, specifically manufacturing, which is increasing lead times for manufactured goods. Longer lead times are also being caused by increased demand for shipping. This coupled with the restraints due to Corona Virus lockdowns is resulting in an unreliable supply chain and longer than expected lead times for products.