Steel News

Nucor Still Bullish on 2019

6/20/2019 - Although U.S. steelmakers might not be experiencing the degree of activity that came with the 2018 boom, the steel industry’s momentum nevertheless has carried forward, and 2019 should prove to be a solid year, said Nucor chairman and chief executive John Ferriola.

Delivering a keynote presentation Wednesday during the Fastmarkets AMM Steel Success Strategies conference in New York City, Ferriola said economic growth remains strong and U.S. shipments are up 4.4% over the same time last year. 

“This year, we see many opportunities across the board for Nucor and for the global steel industry and our customers,” he said. “From where we stand, all indications are that 2019 will continue to be a good year for making and selling steel and steel products.”

Ferriola said the company is forecasting stable or improving demand in 20 of 24 end markets it tracks. And even of the markets that are expected to soften, demand still remains healthy.  

He said the power transmission market will see declines only because of the number of major grid expansions that were completed last year. And while automotive may soften, the decline isn’t expected to be severe, and even then, markets remain at historically high levels, he said.  

Nucor earlier in the week issued its second-quarter earnings guidance and said profits were likely to fall from this time last year due in part to service center destocking. However, it said it most of the end-use markets it follows were stable or growing.