Steeling for a Shortage

3-25-04 - Rising prices in the US steel industry are trickling down to Texoma businesses. From trailer manufacturers to local scrap yards, it’s having good and bad effects.

At least one business in southern Oklahoma that use large amounts of steel can't get enough of it at the right price to keep making their products. V&E Enterprises produces 15 storage trailers a week. But they can’t get enough materials, so they’re sending workers home early some days. They’re also charging extra to make up for the rising prices.

Since January, the price per pound for steel went from 18 cents to 44. Much of that shortage is blamed on China, which is buying more to build up its infrastructure.

But that is good news for scrap yards, which are selling off their steel inventory at a higher pace. Other businesses, like Sundowner Trailers in Coleman, say it’s not having an effect on their production.