Alloy Surcharge

Current alloy surcharges for 1.4301/304 and other important materials:
A detailed explanation and definition of the alloy surcharge as well as the historical background can be found below: What is the alloy surcharge?

Product GroupCountryManufacturerGradeUnitJan 2024Feb 2024Mar 2024Apr 2024May 2024
Flat Prod.Germany/EUOutokumpu1.4016€/kg1.000.980.990.97Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUDiverse1.4016€/kg1.151.121.141.12Request forecasts
Precision StripGermany/EUOutokumpu1.4016€/kg1.201.171.191.17Request forecasts
IngotItalyCogne1.4016€/kg1.030.980.980.94Request forecasts
Bright BarsItalyCogne1.4016€/kg1.271.201.201.17Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsItalyCogne1.4016€/kg1.121.061.061.03Request forecasts
Wire RodItalyCogne1.4016€/kg1.071.021.020.99Request forecasts
Flat Prod.FranceAperam1.4016€/kg1.021.011.021.01Request forecasts
Precision StripFranceAperam1.4016€/kg1.251.251.261.24Request forecasts
IngotFranceUgitech1.4016€/kg0.950.920.940.93Request forecasts
Bright BarsFranceUgitech1.4016€/kg1.171.131.151.14Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsFranceUgitech1.4016€/kg1.041.011.021.01Request forecasts
Wire RodFranceUgitech1.4016€/kg1.000.970.980.97Request forecasts
Flat Prod.SpainAcerinox1.4016€/kg0.980.960.960.93Request forecasts
IngotSpainAcerinox1.4016€/kg0.920.900.900.87Request forecasts
Bright BarsSpainAcerinox1.4016€/kg1.121.101.101.07Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsSpainAcerinox1.4016€/kg1.000.980.990.96Request forecasts
Wire RodSpainAcerinox1.4016€/kg0.960.940.940.91Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USAATI1.4016$/lbs0.410.380.370.35Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USACliff1.4016$/lbs0.350.340.340.33Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USANAS1.4016$/lbs0.360.330.330.31Request forecasts
Bright BarsUSANAS1.4016$/lbs0.360.330.320.30Request forecasts
Flat Prod.Germany/EUOutokumpu1.4301€/kg1.991.952.022.12Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUDiverse1.4301€/kg2.292.242.322.44Request forecasts
Hollow BarsGermany/EUMST1.4301€/kg3.383.313.343.38Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUMST1.4301€/kg3.763.683.713.75Request forecasts
Precision StripGermany/EUOutokumpu1.4301€/kg2.382.342.422.54Request forecasts
IngotItalyCogne1.4301€/kg2.242.152.162.25Request forecasts
Bright BarsItalyCogne1.4301€/kg2.752.642.652.77Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsItalyCogne1.4301€/kg2.432.342.352.46Request forecasts
Wire RodItalyCogne1.4301€/kg2.342.252.252.36Request forecasts
Flat Prod.FranceAperam1.4301€/kg2.011.992.062.16Request forecasts
Precision StripFranceAperam1.4301€/kg2.472.452.532.65Request forecasts
IngotFranceUgitech1.4301€/kg2.152.092.112.23Request forecasts
Bright BarsFranceUgitech1.4301€/kg2.642.562.592.73Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsFranceUgitech1.4301€/kg2.342.282.302.43Request forecasts
Wire RodFranceUgitech1.4301€/kg2.242.182.212.33Request forecasts
Flat Prod.SpainAcerinox1.4301€/kg2.001.962.022.11Request forecasts
Hollow BarsSpainTubacex1.4301€/kg3.052.942.872.95Request forecasts
Welded TubesSpainTubacex1.4301€/kg3.363.243.163.25Request forecasts
IngotSpainAcerinox1.4301€/kg2.272.222.232.33Request forecasts
Bright BarsSpainAcerinox1.4301€/kg2.772.702.722.85Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsSpainAcerinox1.4301€/kg2.482.422.442.55Request forecasts
Wire RodSpainAcerinox1.4301€/kg2.372.312.322.43Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USAATI1.4301$/lbs0.970.930.920.97Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USACliff1.4301$/lbs0.910.890.880.95Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USANAS1.4301$/lbs0.890.850.850.89Request forecasts
Bright BarsUSANAS1.4301$/lbs0.790.750.740.78Request forecasts
Long BarUSANAS1.4301$/lbs0.810.770.760.81Request forecasts
Flat Prod.Germany/EUOutokumpu1.4310€/kg1.921.881.952.04Request forecasts
IngotItalyCogne1.4310€/kg2.142.062.072.15Request forecasts
Bright BarsItalyCogne1.4310€/kg2.642.532.542.65Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsItalyCogne1.4310€/kg2.332.242.252.35Request forecasts
Wire RodItalyCogne1.4310€/kg2.242.152.162.25Request forecasts
IngotFranceUgitech1.4310€/kg2.031.982.002.10Request forecasts
Bright BarsFranceUgitech1.4310€/kg2.492.432.452.58Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsFranceUgitech1.4310€/kg2.222.162.182.29Request forecasts
Wire RodFranceUgitech1.4310€/kg2.122.072.092.20Request forecasts
IngotSpainAcerinox1.4310€/kg2.272.222.232.33Request forecasts
Bright BarsSpainAcerinox1.4310€/kg2.772.702.722.85Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsSpainAcerinox1.4310€/kg2.482.422.442.55Request forecasts
Wire RodSpainAcerinox1.4310€/kg2.372.312.322.43Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USAATI1.4310$/lbs0.810.780.770.80Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USACliff1.4310$/lbs0.780.770.760.81Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USANAS1.4310$/lbs0.790.760.750.78Request forecasts
Bright BarsUSANAS1.4310$/lbs0.790.750.740.78Request forecasts
Flat Prod.Germany/EUOutokumpu1.4404€/kg3.163.243.303.47Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUDiverse1.4404€/kg3.643.733.803.99Request forecasts
Hollow BarsGermany/EUMST1.4404€/kg4.894.724.844.93Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUMST1.4404€/kg5.435.255.375.47Request forecasts
Precision StripGermany/EUOutokumpu1.4404€/kg3.793.893.964.16Request forecasts
IngotItalyCogne1.4404€/kg3.463.483.483.64Request forecasts
Bright BarsItalyCogne1.4404€/kg4.254.274.274.47Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsItalyCogne1.4404€/kg3.773.803.793.97Request forecasts
Wire RodItalyCogne1.4404€/kg3.623.643.633.81Request forecasts
Flat Prod.FranceAperam1.4404€/kg3.203.303.363.51Request forecasts
Precision StripFranceAperam1.4404€/kg3.934.064.144.32Request forecasts
Flat Prod.SpainAcerinox1.4404€/kg3.163.253.303.46Request forecasts
Hollow BarsSpainTubacex1.4404€/kg4.554.424.434.54Request forecasts
Welded TubesSpainTubacex1.4404€/kg5.014.874.885.00Request forecasts
IngotSpainAcerinox1.4404€/kg3.493.553.553.72Request forecasts
Bright BarsSpainAcerinox1.4404€/kg4.264.324.334.53Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsSpainAcerinox1.4404€/kg3.813.873.884.06Request forecasts
Wire RodSpainAcerinox1.4404€/kg3.643.693.703.87Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USAATI1.4404$/lbs1.421.451.431.50Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USACliff1.4404$/lbs1.331.371.351.44Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USANAS1.4404$/lbs1.341.361.341.42Request forecasts
Bright BarsUSANAS1.4404$/lbs1.171.191.171.25Request forecasts
Long BarUSANAS1.4404$/lbs1.231.251.231.31Request forecasts
Flat Prod.Germany/EUOutokumpu1.4571€/kg3.203.283.353.51Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUDiverse1.4571€/kg3.683.773.854.04Request forecasts
Hollow BarsGermany/EUMST1.4571€/kg4.894.724.844.93Request forecasts
Welded TubesGermany/EUMST1.4571€/kg5.435.255.375.47Request forecasts
Precision StripGermany/EUOutokumpu1.4571€/kg3.843.944.014.22Request forecasts
IngotItalyCogne1.4571€/kg3.483.513.503.66Request forecasts
Bright BarsItalyCogne1.4571€/kg4.284.304.294.50Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsItalyCogne1.4571€/kg3.793.823.813.99Request forecasts
Wire RodItalyCogne1.4571€/kg3.643.663.663.83Request forecasts
Flat Prod.FranceAperam1.4571€/kg3.243.353.423.57Request forecasts
Precision StripFranceAperam1.4571€/kg3.994.124.204.39Request forecasts
IngotFranceUgitech1.4571€/kg3.373.413.433.61Request forecasts
Bright BarsFranceUgitech1.4571€/kg4.144.184.204.43Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsFranceUgitech1.4571€/kg3.683.723.743.94Request forecasts
Wire RodFranceUgitech1.4571€/kg3.523.563.583.77Request forecasts
Flat Prod.SpainAcerinox1.4571€/kg3.223.303.373.53Request forecasts
Hollow BarsSpainTubacex1.4571€/kg4.554.424.434.54Request forecasts
Welded TubesSpainTubacex1.4571€/kg5.014.874.885.00Request forecasts
IngotSpainAcerinox1.4571€/kg3.493.553.553.72Request forecasts
Bright BarsSpainAcerinox1.4571€/kg4.264.324.334.53Request forecasts
Hot Rolled BarsSpainAcerinox1.4571€/kg3.813.873.884.06Request forecasts
Wire RodSpainAcerinox1.4571€/kg3.643.693.703.87Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USAATI1.4571$/lbs1.461.481.471.55Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USACliff1.4571$/lbs1.381.421.401.50Request forecasts
Flat Prod.USANAS1.4571$/lbs1.341.361.341.42Request forecasts

Unfortunately, we are not allowed to publish the official alloy surcharges of DEW (D), BGH (D) and AST (I) for legal reasons.
However, you can of course obtain reliable alloy surcharge forecasts for almost all materials from these manufacturers.

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1.4301 (304) is the first commercial stainless steel grade and, with a production share of 33 %, the most frequently used. It is an austenitic, acid-resistant 18/10 Cr-Ni steel. The steel is one of the few materials that is suitable for ultra-low temperature applications down to near absolute zero. It is also known commonly as V2A.

Applications: The steel is resistant to water, water vapour, humidity, food acids and weak organic and inorganic acids and can be used in a wide range of applications.

more

1.4016 (A430) is a  ferritic, 17 per cent chromium steel with good corrosion resistance, whose share in the production of stainless steels is approx. 16-18 per cent. Due to the lack of nickel, this material is not as corrosion-resistant as 1.4301, but has a significantly lower alloy surcharge and therefore lower costs.

Applications: The high chromium content gives the steel good resistance to water, water vapour, humidity and weak acids and alkalis. The possible applications are very diverse.

more

1.4310 (301/302) is often used for corrosion-resistant parts. The strength of 1.4310 for standard parts such as disc springs is achieved by cold rolling.

Applications: Food industry and chemical industry, as well as spring steel in all sectors.

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1.4404 (316L) is an austenitic stainless steel. Due to its lower carbon content, it is easier to machine than the otherwise equivalent stainless steel 1.4401. Due to its molybdenum content, the alloy surcharge of 1.4404 is significantly higher than the standard material 1.4301.

Application: Mechanical components with increased corrosion resistance requirements, especially in chloride-containing media and for hydrogen.

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1.4571 (316Ti) is an easily weldable material and generally requires no heat treatment after welding. It is the ideal material when strength at high temperatures is required. Due to its Cr, Ni, Mo and Ti content, its alloy surcharge and therefore its cost is quite high.

Application: The increased resistance to corrosion and pitting predestines these steels for use primarily in the wide field of chemical apparatus engineering. It is also increasingly used in exhaust gas technology and waste water treatment.

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What is the alloy surcharge and how is it calculated?

Definition

The alloy surcharge (AS) is a surcharge calculated according to the prices of the alloy elements, and is the amount by which the basic price for stainless steel increases.

How is the alloy surcharge calculated?

Here is a step-by-step description of how to calculate the alloy surcharge:
1. Find the raw material price base for the alloy surcharge
Usually, only the main components of the alloy are taken into account. These are ferro-chromium, nickel, molybdenum and scrap in standard rust-, acid- and heat-resistant steels. However, other alloy components, such as copper, titanium or niobium, can also be considered, if used in relevant proportions.

Some manufacturers have recently charged an energy surcharge due to the enormous increase in energy prices. This is either included in the alloy surcharge or charged separately.

The commodity prices used for calculating the alloy surcharge depend on the manufacturer.

The period for calculating the price base is usually one month, calculated from the 21st of second preceding month to the 20th of first preceding month before the month for which the alloy surcharge is calculated.

Example:
At present, hollow steel is still the exception. Here, the alloy surcharge is calculated two months in advance, in some cases also from the 1st of the third preceding month till the end of the second preceding month.
All values of the alloy surcharge price base are initially calculated in US dollars.
2. Deduct a reference value from the determined alloy prices.
A reference value is subtracted from the current average prices of the alloy components. Since the alloy surcharge is historically based on a surcharge for a price difference in a standard product at a certain time in the past (more details under "A look back through history"), the reference values of the alloys are now subtracted from the determined prices.
These reference values are the base prices of the alloy components at a specified date in the past. This means that the alloy surcharge had the value 0 on reference day X in the past. The reference values are not published and are therefore not known.

3. Convert into the target currency
After deducting the reference values, the obtained average base values are now converted into the target currency, e.g. euro. Therefore, the alloy surcharge also includes the current exchange rate.
4. Multiply and add up the calculated base values by the share of alloy in the material
The alloy surcharge is the weighted average price of all the alloys included in a material. This means we multiply the share of an alloy included in a material by the calculated price of the alloy and add up the numbers for each component.

Example for chrome:
The price of chrome as a share of the total alloy surcharge is the difference between the base price of chrome and the chrome reference value, divided by the USD/EUR exchange rate and then multiplied by the share of chrome contained in the material.
5. Calculate the alloy surcharge for different product groups
The alloy surcharge is not calculated the same for all product groups. Manufacturers use adjustment factors to allow for additional scrap caused by varying numbers of production steps.
For example, in the case of welded tube, which is produced from flat steel, the additional steps of cutting and welding add 15% to the flat products surcharge.

The adjustment factors generally depend on how much processing a product requires.
In addition to welded tube, products that usually have adjustment factors are seamless tube, wire rod, ingots/billets or precision steel.

If the current calculated average value of an alloy is lower than its reference value, meaning the above formula results in a negative number, its share in the alloy surcharge is zero. So there are no negative alloy surcharges.
Final Note
Since the alloy surcharge is a price component, it is supervised by antitrust authorities, which prohibit any price fixing, thereby preventing any standardization of alloy surcharges.

Even if many would prefer a uniform, easy-to-understand alloy surcharge, we expect manufacturers to raise the number of their own alloy surcharges in the future, which will make it even harder to compare prices.

However, you can rest assured that we at LZ-prognose.de will continue to offer forecasts of all the comment manufacturer alloy surcharges.

Looking for more info on the history and origin of the alloy surcharge?
Then please read the article further below.

Can we now calculate the alloy surcharge for stainless steel ourselves?

In principle, yes, at least approximately.

How much time and effort does this take up?

A great deal!
We must ascertain the individual, unknown components for each respective manufacturer, such as for example the reference values, basic raw material price and occasionally also weighting for alloys as accurately as possible. This requires many years of experience and background knowledge.

Are there any reliable forecasts for alloy surcharges for stainless steel?


Fortunately, yes.

LZ-prognose.de has brought their knowledge to bear and with a great deal of time and effort can very accurately reconstruct the calculation of alloy surcharges for all major manufacturers in Europe and North America.

In this way, with the help of our raw materials expertise we are able to prepare very accurate individual forecasts of the constituent alloy parts and so of the overall alloy surcharge of each material (at present over 2,000 individual prognoses).

Our unerring precision at the same time sets benchmarks: Lying at over 97%, 4 weeks prior to the publication of alloy surcharges.
You can find a graphic assessment of the last 2 years and further details under accuracy.

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Do you actually know why alloy surcharges exist, and who sets them for stainless steel?

A look back through history.

All stainless steels have a high proportion of high-quality alloy parts such as for example ferrochrome, nickel and molybdenum, which have high prices compared to the basic steel material.

In fact these alloy components were very cheap at that time and were not very volatile from to-day’s point of view, but by 1988 this had already led to customary overall prices of stainless steel products needing to be adjusted frequently throughout the year. In order to prevent these repeated new pricing agreements, some manufacturers formed a second pricing component, only dependent on the alloy component parts.

This was supposed to comprise the price variations for alloy parts with regard to a basic product at the time the calculation commenced. Consequently the method of calculation described above was developed, in which reference values at that time corresponded to existing prices for alloys at the start of the calculation. In this way the alloy surcharge was viewed as being a monthly correction of the basic product on grounds of the changing prices of the alloy parts.
In this way we were able to determine basic prices once and for all and to agree on the alloy surcharge as a variable component of the overall price, which should make up for fluctuations in prices for the individual alloys. In this way new negotiations during the agreed period of validity for prices were no longer necessary.

First of all a calculation period of the previous 3 month was used, which promised to give us good equalisation and in this way no large jumps in the alloy surcharge.


But then nickel, one of the most important component alloy parts to become a sought after speculation object on the LME (London Metal Exchange), and its prices started to adopt irrational courses. The price of nickel, which fluctuated comparatively slowly between 4,000 and 10,000 $/t from 1994 to 2003, developed a dynamic from November 2005 (price: 12,000 $/t) which peaked at a historical maximum price of 50,000 $/t only 1 ½ years later in May 2007, but then abruptly crashed to 10,000 $/t (November 2008) in only 1 ½ years. This dynamic with a calculation period of the 3 previous months could no longer be tolerated by manufacturers.


This is why the calculation period was set as the 2 previous months and finally as one month prior. Merely manufacturers of hollow bars and seamless tubes left the calculation period as the last two elapsed months.

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FAQ

Questions around the alloy surcharge

Why do alloy surcharges vary between different suppliers?

Each manufacturer has its own alloy surcharge calculation method with its own parameters and reference values. As the alloy surcharge is a price component, manufacturers are not allowed to harmonise their parameters with each other, as this would be considered price fixing and is prohibited by the antitrust authorities. Some dealers also change the original manufacturer's alloy surcharges slightly in order to avoid problems under antitrust law.

What are the economic advantages for companies in connection with alloy surcharges?

A few examples:
1. Costs can be minimised by shifting the purchase of stainless steel to the next month, when the alloy surcharge is likely to fall. In the past, our reliable forecasts have resulted in average savings of between €30 and €100 per tonne of stainless steel (1.4301 flat-rolled OTK). (See application example).
2. The background and trends of alloy surcharges are important information in sales when negotiating prices with customers.
3. Longer-term alloy surcharge trends can be taken into account in medium to long-term purchasing planning and budgeting.

Can alloy surcharges be forecast?

Yes, fortunately this is possible.
LZ-prognose.de has recursively determined the calculation methodology with a great deal of effort. With our well-founded raw material forecasts, we can calculate material-specific alloy surcharge forecasts very precisely. And this with an average accuracy of 97% on the 1st of the previous month.

How do market fluctuations influence the alloy surcharge?

The influences on the alloy surcharge are very diverse. As raw materials are usually traded on the stock exchange and supply and demand can change quickly, they are very volatile. As we include all raw material prices individually in every alloy surcharge forecast, you as a customer will immediately recognise the influence of a market fluctuation on the value of the alloy surcharge. For example, if nickel rises or falls by 20% due to a stock market event, we specifically calculate the resulting alloy surcharge for each material.

What effects do international trade policies have on alloy surcharges?

International trade policies such as export restrictions (e.g. Indonesia for nickel) also have an impact on raw material prices and therefore also on the alloy surcharge. Another example is the sanctions during the war in Ukraine, which led to significant price increases for nickel.

Are there industry-specific differences in alloy surcharges?

Yes, depending on the depth of production, the alloy surcharges have a higher scrap content and therefore a higher raw material content, which influences the alloy surcharge.
Some product groups, such as precision steel or welded tubes, have a percentage surcharge on the standard alloy surcharge, while other product groups, such as bar steel, are calculated separately using their own parameters.

What options are there for determining current alloy surcharges yourself?

The nickel rate and the €/$ exchange rate are available to everyone. All other rates such as molybdenum, scrap, chrome etc. are difficult to find freely available on the Internet and usually require the use of an expensive raw material service. It is also important to choose the right commodity exchange and exchange rate. In addition, the unknown calculation formula including parameters must be recursively determined with considerable effort.
This know-how is provided by alloysurcharge.de for a small fee.

A selection of current manufacturers of rust, acid and heat-resistant stainless steels with their individual alloy surcharges:

Germany and EU
Outokumpu: flat products Germany and EU, long products (ingots, wire rod, hot rolled and cold-rolled bars) and precision strip. Alloy Surcharges Outokumpu

Deutsche Edelstahlwerke: long products (ingots, hot rolled and bright bars, wire rod). Only customers are notified of alloy surcharges.

Mannesmann Stainless Tubes GmbH (MST): hollow bars and seamless tubes. Only customers and interested parties are notified of alloy surcharges directly.

Italy

Acciai Speciali Terni: Flat products. Only customers are notified of alloy surcharges.
Cogne Acciai Speciali S.p.A.: Long products (billets, bright bars and hot rolled bars, wire). Alloy Surcharges of Cogne Acciai Speciali S.p.A.

France

Aperam Stainless Europe: Flat products, precision strip. Alloy Surcharge Aperam Stainless Europe

Ugitech SA: Long products (semi-finished products, bright bars and hot rolled bars, wire). Alloy Surcharges Ugitech SA

Spain

Acerinox: Flat products, Long products (bright bars and hot rolled bars, wire rod). Alloy Surcharges  Acerinox Flat Prod.,  Acerinox Bars

TUBACEX S.A.: hot rolled and cold rolled hollow bars. Alloy Surcharge TUBACEX S.A.

Scandinavia

Alleima: steel bars, hollow bars as well as flat products made of special alloys. Alloy Surcharges of Alleima.

North America

ATI: Flat products. Alloy Surcharge ATI

Cliffs: Flat products. Alloy Surcharge Cliffs

North American Stainless (NAS): Flat products, long products (hot rolled bars and bright bars, wire rod). Alloy Surcharge NAS

Outokumpu USA: Flat products, long products (wire rod, bars) and precision strip. Alloy Surcharge Outokumpu USA

As the alloy surcharge is a pricing component, it is subject to monitoring by cartel authorities, who forbid any collusion or price-fixing in this context, and in this way counteract any standardisation of alloy surcharges.

This is why we expect an increase in the number of manufacturer alloy surcharges in future.

You can rest assured that we at LZ-prognose.de will also continue to offer forecasts of all the current manufacturer alloy surcharges.
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