May 17, 2019 – Last night, the Trump Administration announced that it is cutting tariffs on Turkish steel imports by half, bringing the total number down from 50% to 25%. This reduction is in apparent acknowledgement of the sharp decline in Turkish imports since the imposition of punitive tariffs, and now brings Turkey’s tariff level in line with other major countries of origin.
Today, the Trump Administration announced sweeping 25% tariffs on steel products (10% on aluminum). The trade remedies are intended to combat what U.S. steel producers contend are unfair and persistent imports of steel and aluminum products from a variety of countries. Said imports, according to various industry officials, undermine the U.S. steel industry and, are therefore damaging to national security.
Here’s a timeline of how the day progressed:
7:12 AM EST: President Trump signaled today’s meeting in an early morning tweet:
Our Steel and Aluminum industries (and many others) have been decimated by decades of unfair trade and bad policy with countries from around the world. We must not let our country, companies and workers be taking advantage of any longer. We want free, fair and SMART TRADE! (7:12 AM – Mar 1, 2018)
11:00 AM EST: CNBC reported Thursday that a “listening meeting” scheduled for “11-ish today” would not include a formal announcement of the Administration’s decision on steel tariffs.
11:30 AM EST: Steel stocks initially surged in early trading Thursday, according to CNBC. However, the sector pared back its earlier gains when the Administration announced that no decision on Section 232 tariffs would be released today.
1:30 PM EST: CNBC reports, “DOW drops 350 points after Trump says steel and aluminum tariffs coming next week.”
The White House did not clarify when a final announcement on tariffs would be made, only that the order would be “signed sometime next week.”
Updated 1:30 PM EST.
Kim Slowey, Mary Tyler March
Updated Dec 11, 2017
Full Article Here
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, the White House is close to presenting a comprehensive infrastructure building plan in January. The plan, according to White House officials, will include “a minimum of $200 billion in federal dollars,” with a goal of leveraging that federal investment to generate “hundreds of billions more” from other sources.
“Super silk.” “Bionic webbing”… “capable of holding a human.” Pretty scary stuff, right?
Scientists in Italy and the UK have been feeding spiders a solution of graphene carbon-nanotubes, and the spiders are spinning Kevlar-class spider webs.
Although these kinds of science-meets-nature stores that involve any kinds of reinforcement angle (fabrics, materials, even construction product application), always draw my attention. Imagine future concrete fibers as long strands of spider “super silk.”
Aside from the sheer creepiness of this story, it’s a fascinating look at the imagination of scientific researchers around the globe.
According to a Nov-19 press statement, Nucor will build a $250 million rebar micro-mill in Sedalia, Missouri (near Kansas City). The press release does not specify the initial capacity, only that 225 full-time jobs will be created. But for the same price tag, CMC’s forthcoming mill in Durant, OK should have annual capacity of 350,000 tons. Nucor has also confirmed a second micro-mill, to be situated in the southeastern U.S.. However the exact location of the second mill has not yet been disclosed.
Fueled by low interest rates and a strong jobs market, housing starts rose by 13.7% in October. The biggest gains were in the South and Midwest. By type, multi-family housing starts rose the most, jumping 37.4%, while single family starts rose a modest 5.3%.
Advanced Construction Robotics (ACR) has invented a robot for tying repetitive rebar intersections. Reduced labor, reduced accidents, improved efficiency, 24/7 operation without breaks. Check out the video at the end of the article as well.
ModernMetals.com reported today that the AIA Consensus Construction Forecast “expects the industry to experience slower growth, at a rate ranging from 3.5 percent to 4 percent, for the remainder of 2017 and through 2018.” Following two years of solid growth, 2017 has not displayed the same promising growth as previously hoped. Economists cite as possible reasons for the slowdown as sluggish U.S. economic growth, general uncertainty and concerns among construction industry professionals, and certain vulnerable construction sectors (e.g. retail, industrial, healthcare and education).
However, it should be noted that while the rate of growth has pulled back somewhat, there is still growth, as evidenced by the continued and “steady pace of construction starts across the country,” according to Attilio Rivetti, Preconstruction and Procurement for Turner Construction Co, and author of the Turner Building Cost Index.
The Portland Cement Association (PCA) has updated its annual forecast of cement consumption to show 2.8 percent growth in 2018. This number is down from the projections released earlier in the year, and are based on poor weather and lower anticipated public sector budgets. However, PCA notes that a strong federal infrastructure bill could have a positive impact on cement consumption.
Historically, rebar consumption has followed cement consumption with nearly perfect correlation.