US crude steel output totalled 1.81 million tons last week, down 2.8% from 1.86 million tons the previous week, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute based in Washington.

Mills operated at an average capacity utilisation rate of 73.3% – it was the lowest level since early November, when US mills produced 1.79 million tons of steel.

In the corresponding week last year, mills produced 1.86 million tons at an average utilisation rate of 76.1%.

Mills have produced 68.79 million tons so far this year at an average capacity utilisation rate of 77.3%, up 5% on the same period last year, when mills produced 65.50 million tons at an average utilisation rate of 74.8%.

editorial@metalbulletin.com