Steel users pinched

Northwest Indiana News:

For steelmakers, a new global market has meant steady and sometimes record profits in an industry many had written off. For companies that buy steel for everything from auto parts to appliances, it’s meant pain.

‘It’s been a nightmare over the last two years. Most Americans don’t understand what an impact steel pricing is having on U.S. manufacturing,’ said Bill McKibben

from later on in the article …

Four auto suppliers with assets greater than $100 million filed for bankruptcy in 2004, according to the Original Equipment Suppliers Association. Four more have filed so far this year, and others say they’re on the brink.

Steel consumers say the federal government is unfairly protecting the steel industry by keeping many tariffs in place. In April, the U.S. International Trade Commission voted to keep tariffs for another five years on certain imports from Russia, Japan and Brazil.

“The U.S. steel industry is protected from competition by the government and enjoying record profits while we’re in an economic tailspin,” said Nels Leutwiler, CEO of Chicago-based Parkview Metal Products, which makes stamped metal items.

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