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US, Canada aluminum mill product demand in Dec rises 6% on year

Wednesday, Feb 28, 2018

   Demand for aluminum semi-fabricated (mill) products in the US and Canada -- measured by domestic producer shipments plus imports -- totaled an estimated 1.445 billion lb in December, up 6% compared with the December 2016 total of 1.364 billion lb, according to the Aluminum Association. Shipments of aluminum sheet and plate totaled 835 million lb in December, up 5.8% year on year. Extruded product shipments were up 6.9% year over year to 391 million lb. Estimated shipments of aluminum ingot for castings, exports and other uses totaled 535 million lb, down 9.8% compared with a year ago, according to the trade group.

  Apparent consumption -- demand less exports -- in domestic US and Canadian markets totaled 1.742 billion lb in December, up 1% compared with the December 2016 total of 1.725 billion lb.
  Producer inventories totaled 3.229 billion lb in December, up 2.9% from the November 2017 level of 3.138 billion lb. Compared to a year ago, producer inventories were up 5%.
  Aluminum imports of ingot, scrap and mill products into the US and Canada (excluding cross-border trade) totaled 851 million lb in December 2017, up 21.4% compared with the December 2016 total of 702 million lb.
  Exports including scrap -- which accounted for around 58.7% of reported aluminum exports in December -- totaled 577 million lb that month, up 22.4% from a year earlier. Excluding scrap, exports totaled 238 million lb, up 2.6% year on year. Exports of scrap increased 41.7% year over year.
  For the full year, US and Canadian aluminum demand -- domestic producer shipments plus imports -- totaled 27.199 billion lb in 2017, up 2.9% over the 2016 total, the trade group data showed.
  Demand for semi-fabricated (mill) products totaled 19.619 billion lb in 2017, up 5.5%, the data showed.
  Apparent consumption in the US and Canada totaled an estimated 24.227 billion lb, up 3.9% year on year.
  Exports of aluminum ingot and mill products from the US and Canada -- excluding cross-border trade -- totaled 2.972 billion lb in 2017, down 4.6% compared with the same period last year, while imports rose 22.7% to 9.128 billion lb.
  Total imports for 2017 rose 23.2% to 9.803 billion lb, while exports were up 6.6% to 6.510 billion lb.
  The US aluminum industry purchased an estimated 695 million lb of aluminum scrap in November, according to the most recent US Geological Survey data, down 3.9% compared with the November 2016 total of 723 million lb. USGS estimates recovery of aluminum and aluminum alloys totaled 631 million lb, a decrease of 4% year over year.
  Through November 2017, preliminary data indicate that recovery of aluminum from scrap totaled an estimated 7.368 billion lb, up 1.4% compared with the year-earlier total of 7.265 billion lb. US exports of scrap, not included in the government's consumption statistics, totaled 3.198 billion lb through November, up 16.3% from the same period in 2016.

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