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June 17, 2011

Shipment Levels Strengthen in May

June 17, 2011

Shipment Levels Strengthen in May

Metals Activity Report for May 2011


Metal Service Center Shipment Levels Strengthened in May

ROLLING MEADOWS, Illinois, June 17, 2011 – Shipments of steel and aluminum products by U.S. and Canadian metals service centers returned to more robust growth rates during May, the Metals Activity Report from the Metals Service Center Institute shows. The higher rates of growth generally reversed the weaker tone to shipments reported in April.

Steel Product Activity

May steel shipments by U.S. metals service centers totaled 3.50 million tons, or 20.1% more metal than shipments during May 2010. Shipments for the first five months of the year of 17.28 million tons were up 20.3% from a year ago. U.S. steel inventories at the end of May totaled nearly 8.3 million tons, up 19% from stockpiles of a year ago and, at current shipping rates, equal to a 2.4-month supply.

In Canada, metals centers shipped 528,300 tons of steel during May, a 14.1% increase. Shipments during the first five months of the year of 2.70 million tons were up 14.4% from a year ago. Canadian steel inventories of 1.54 million tons were 10.4% larger than at the end of May 2010 and equal to a 2.9-month supply at current shipping rates.

Aluminum Product Activity

May aluminum shipments from U.S. metals centers totaled 127,400 tons, or 31.4% more aluminum than in May 2010. For the year to date, shipments of aluminum totaled 629,300 tons, or 27.8% more volume of the metal than last year. Month-end aluminum inventories of 362,900 tons were 29.4% greater than at the end of May 2010 and, at current shipping rates, equal to a 2.8-month supply.

Canadian aluminum shipments during May totaled 12,500 tons, or 10.9% more than service center volume during the same month last year. Shipments for the year of 61,100 tons were up 9.1% from a year ago. Inventories at the end of May of 30,600 tons of aluminum were 6.9% below year-ago stockpiles and, at current shipping rates, equal to a 2.5-month supply.

The Metals Activity Report (MAR), based on data from metals service centers in the United States and Canada, is produced by the Metals Service Center Institute and a third-party econometrics and strategy firm, McCoy, Scott & Co.

Founded in 1909, the Metals Service Center Institute has more than 370 members operating from about 1,200 locations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and elsewhere in the world. Together, MSCI members constitute the largest single group of metals purchasers in North America, amounting each year to more than 55 million tons of steel, aluminum, and other metals, with about 300,000 manufacturers and fabricators as customers. MSCI’s membership also includes almost all ferrous and non-ferrous industrial metals producers in North America. Metals service centers inventory and distribute metals and provide first-stage fabrication services.

Contacts:

Chris Marti, vice president, research (847) 485-3009

cmarti@msci.org