The Cost of the Steel and Aluminum Tariffs

Now almost two months into the new steel and aluminum tariffs. We’re starting to have a clear idea on how the cost of the steel and aluminum tariffs is impacting the steel industry and roll forming. Currently, the 25% tariff is in place unless President Trump specifically waives the tariff for a country. For now, the tariff excludes Canada, currently our largest steel supplier, and Mexico.

The largest consumers of steel are the construction and automotive industries, together accounting for over 65% of steel demand. Roller Die supplies parts to both industries and has been working with our customers to try and find the best sources of material and, when possible, lock in pricing. Of course, major changes in raw material pricing is going to affect company profit, which will in turn affect the stock market, causing it to decrease. These changes also impact the costs to customers as, instead of decreasing profits, companies look to push higher prices on to consumers.

Domestic steelworkers, of course, feel like the new tariff levels the playing field. Making US steel an attractive option for purchase cost-wise. Employment in the steel industry has been contracting in recent years, so this tariff will certainly help these employees.

In the past, tariffs on steel have been short-lived as the ramifications on the cost of goods. Stock prices have quickly shown up and caused domestic push-back. This new tariff, with its exemptions for certain approved trading partners, may end up working differently. Meanwhile, Roller Die will certainly be paying attention to both the costs from suppliers. We also help with customer demand and try to find the best prices available.