How the new Steel Tariffs might affect you

Hascall Steel Company
How the New Steel Tariffs
Might Affect You
April 17, 2018

New tariffs set to start May 11 have been announced that could impact the price of foreign steel, but right now things are changing every day on this topic. Many of those who purchase and use steel for their manufacturing facilities will want to keep a close eye on what is happening in the coming months because the tariffs could impact what they pay to obtain the steel they need. With changes occurring just about every day, it’s more important than ever to work with an organization like Hascall Steel Company.

Why Are the Tariffs Changing?

Current tensions between the US and China are escalating, with the question of reciprocal tariffs on goods imported to either country being the biggest concern. The US administration called for tariffs of 25% on foreign steel, which began on March 23, but there are temporary exclusions for many countries until May. Tariffs imposed by China have been reduced, but the United States is expected to recommend additional tariffs on Chinese imports.  Bottom line, we believe the changing tariff language and posture is an indirect play on broader goals and initiatives surrounding US trade imbalances and the current administration that asks for much, hoping to get some…

While the negotiations are ongoing, it’s nearly impossible to predict where China or the United States will be willing to compromise. These tariffs can impact a lot of different areas for both countries, beyond the steel that US manufacturers might obtain many foreign sources.  Until the details are finalized, and even possibly after they’re finalized, there could be more big changes in store for both countries and the manufacturers who use steel.

What’s Changing with the Tariffs?

There is an air of uncertainty while the tariffs are being finalized, and there is debate about whether they will go through or how much it will impact US manufacturers. Most businesses have noted that the price of steel has risen since the tariffs were announced and others have voiced concerns over steel becoming scarce in the meantime.  However, many only see the tariffs as a trigger for domestic price increases, and future tariff adjustments will continue to affect domestic production.

Many in the industry are predicting that more manufactures will purchase steel now in order to avoid a price spike in the future, but that action could simply lead to an immediate shortage causing the very price spike they are looking to avoid.   Manufacturers that work with a supplier like Hascall may be able to avoid involvement in a price spike like this because of their partnership with a supplier.

How is this Impacting the Cost of Steel?

While it will take a little bit for the full effect of the tariffs to be revealed, right now there is a rise in the cost of steel mostly due to the uncertainty and restriction of foreign supply. If the tariffs are not adjusted and continue as planned, manufacturers who use a significant amount of foreign steel for their business will see a rise in operating costs soon. There is no way to tell the full impact of the tariffs on the costs of foreign and domestic steel. Many manufacturers will want to keep a close eye on the tariffs and the cost of steel to ensure they don’t have a huge price hike while the impact of the tariffs is unclear or once the full impact of the tariffs is shown.

Take Advantage of Help to Keep Costs Low

Manufacturers in the US have the chance to partner with a supplier to make sure they can get the help they need to remain informed about the prices of steel and what they can do to keep their costs low. Hascall Steel Company reminds manufacturers that the full impact has yet to be seen and there’s still a lot that could change very quickly. Opening up the supply base for your manufacturing company and working with a trusted supplier like Hascall can help you minimize the impact this could have on your business.

Hascall Steel would love to partner with you to make sure you can still receive the steel you need and can help make sure you’re paying the lowest cost possible. They only obtain 2% of their steel from foreign sources, and they can help negotiate the steel prices for you to ensure you can get what you need when you need it without paying too much.

As a manufacturer, you need to keep on top of the changing costs of your supplies. With the tariffs being imposed and negotiated right now, predicting and managing your steel costs can be difficult. Your company could be significantly impacted if the price of foreign steel rises too high. Hascall Steel Company can help you keep prices low and ensure you can get the steel you need when you need it. Contact them today about creating a partnership with their company so you can stay on top of everything that’s happening and work to keep your costs as low as possible.

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    Shop Supervisor at a West Michigan Fabrication Company


We love customer relationships that become true partnerships between your team and our sales representatives.

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At Hascall Steel we understand that part of being an expert is being able to tailor steel to your needs. With that in mind there are some key areas that will help us fulfill your steel order in a way that is best suited to your company’s capacities. By working with our sales team, we can adjust several aspects of your order to make things easier for your team members. Next are some areas to keep in mind that can improve efficiency and quality.


Often customers place an order with the following basic information: Quantity/Gauge/Width/Length/Steel Type…

However there are quite a few QUALIFIERS that will help us all get the best value from the informational exchange.


When discussing material with our Sales Team, be sure to include tolerances for your gauge, width, and length (if applicable). In some cases, Hascall can meet tolerances as low as +/-.001 on gauge, +/-.003 on width, and +/-.015 on length. Specifications – Many steel specifications come with sub categories that can alter chemistries and mechanical boundaries. Be sure to have the full specification when ordering or talk with your sales representative to discuss options.


Proper packaging can help reduce unloading and production time. ID – We offer ID sizes in 16”, 20”, and 24” OD – We are able to provide OD sizes up to 72” Skidding – Standard or custom skidding available, just let us know how you would like your material skidded to best meet your equipment needs.
Paper – Protective paper is standard on all orders but can be applied with standard or full wrapping both with and without Hascall Logos. Max Coil and Skid Weight – Coils can be adjusted to meet your max lift and coil capacities.
Offloading – Material can be shipped skidded or standing and set for Forklift on the side or the rear of the bed. Material can also be shipped ready for sheet lifter or overhead crane offload.


Steel is only good if it gets there when you need it. At Hascall we have an experienced Logistics team that will ensure that your steel arrives on time in the way that best suits your needs. Whether you would like delivery via our in-house Steel Man Transportation service or if you would like to pick up your material personally, our team can set up appointments that meet your schedule. Our Logistics team can also arrange a 3rd party carrier if needed. Delivery dates, times, and address should be discussed with your Sales Representative prior to ordering.


And lastly, we know each customer is unique. There may be special requests that we would love to accommodate. These may range from a sample of the steel attached to the packaging, to increased tag requirements and frequencies. We are happy to work with you in order to be your trusted choice in slit steel coil and blanks.