Aluminum Sourcing Trends Higher Amidst Uncertainty of Sanctions


This Thomas Index Report is sponsored by POWER-GEN International 2018, the world’s largest power generation event where conventional meets renewable.

Hello again. This week we’re going to take a look at sourcing activity for Aluminum by users of the platform. Our data shows that over the past 12 weeks, sourcing activity for this category is up 32 percent over its historical average.

Our firmographic buyer data shows that three of the top industries driving this sourcing trend on our platform are manufacturing/metal fabrication, aerospace & defense, and automotive.

Back in February, we reported that our data showed a surge in sourcing activity for aluminum, as uncertainty over tariffs had manufacturers stocking up on the metal, and looking for new U.S. sources of supply to diversify and replace foreign suppliers.

This month brings more uncertainty, as the White House considers re-imposing sanctions against Moscow-based United Company RUSAL, the world’s second-largest aluminum supplier. The Trump administration initially imposed sanctions against RUSAL in April, due to its ties to Russian Oligarch Oleg Deripaska. The sanctions gave US customers a June deadline to stop dealing with the company, a move that sent aluminum prices soaring. Those sanctions were eased after several European governments and multinational corporations appealed to the US Treasury, warning that cutting off the world’s largest aluminum supplier outside of China would wreak havoc on the global supply chain. According to Bloomberg, Mr. Deripaska is negotiating with US authorities on a plan to lift the threat of sanctions before their stated October 23 deadline. As the world awaits the outcome, it appears manufacturers are once again investigating options for aluminum suppliers.

In addition to the general category of Aluminum, our data also shows that sourcing activity is up 10 percent or more, month-over-month, for Aluminum Sheets, Aluminum Ingots, and Aluminum Coils.

Moving on from Aluminum, here’s a look at the top ten industrial product and service categories being sourced on the platform over the past four weeks.

  1. CNC Machining
  2. Steel
  3. Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs)
  4. Food Products
  5. Injection Molded Plastics
  6. Aluminum
  7. Metal Fabrication
  8. Tube Fabrication & Bending Services
  9. Sewing Contractors
  10. Contract Manufacturing 

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Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next week.

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