Global demand for metals continues to increase as the global economy continues to rebound after the COVID-19 crisis. This, along with a number of other related factors, has led to an overall increase in prices.
Market prices for all metals continue to rise, including galvanized steel, aluminium, and most importantly, stainless steel, for BS Stainless and our customers. There is a severe shortage of materials, resulting in further delays in delivery times. Many companies in various industries are struggling to meet the demand for their products.
Auto production has been hit hard; the current shortage of semiconductor chips is compounded by reduced steel supplies. Beverage can makers are also feeling the impact, as all excess aluminum has disappeared from the market: Ball President Daniel Fisher said the company was "capacity constrained," adding that he expected "by 2023, demand Will continue to exceed supply..”
After a temporary lull, global freight shortages are once again an issue. Freight prices have risen again, further increasing the cost of materials and finished goods. Almost all industrial sectors that depend on a continuous supply of the metal have been affected by the price increase. Although the restaurant and brewing industries are quieter than usual due to the impact of COVID-19, the gradual reopening of these industries will lead to increased demand for materials, especially stainless steel.
Construction activity in the UK expanded rapidly last month, nearly matching the 6.5-year record set in March when COVID-19 restrictions were eased, according to a recent survey compiled by data firm IHS Markit. Tim Moore, economics director at IHS Markit, said: "The UK construction sector is experiencing its strongest growth phase in six-and-a-half years and the recovery is now balanced across the homebuilding, commercial and civil engineering categories."
This growth in the construction industry has brought increased demand for a variety of stainless steel products, including wire and strip for wall ties, lintels, wall starters, and fixtures such as nails and screws.
Both suppliers and manufacturers will face challenges in the coming months due to material shortages and rising prices. In these turbulent times, BS Stainless will continue to do its best to serve our customers.