Metal buildings are constructed of steel material as Steel is one of the most common metals and was mainly used for swords, tools and cutlery. By the 1850’s, steel was used to construct steel rails which were able to handle heavy and faster cars. However, steel broke into popularity in the early 20th century and became even more popular during the World War – 2 and more widespread after the war. In 1891, the world witnessed the first all-steel church in Manila which was designed by Genaro Palacios and the structural metal was manufactured in Belgium. There are several factors that have contributed to the fluctuations of price in metal building materials.
Production and Supply – Firstly, the metal steel has become widely available and has saturated the market. Before 1860, steel was costly and manufactured in small quantities. Using the statistics from the World Steel Association – one can track the amounts of crude steel produced in the whole world since 1900. It is shown that 28.3 million metric tons of crude steel was produced in 1900, twenty years later, 72.5 million metric tons was produced. Thereafter in 1940, 140.6 million metric tons was produced and 346.4 million metric tons in 1960. As the statics continue, 717.4 million metric tons were produced in 1980, 848.9 million tons in 2000 and 1,622.8 million tons in 2015. It is evident to see that overly the production of steel has been increasingly high.
Furthermore, the number of countries producing steel has also spurge as time progressed. As one who looks around the continent, will note that the period between 1967 and 1977 Europe had about twenty-five countries producing steel then barely rose to twenty-six countries from 1978 to 1988. From 1989 to 1999, Europe continued its ascend closing 1999 with thirty-one steel producing countries. Through 2000 to 2010, Europe added nine more countries and lastly, it dropped to thirty-eight countries producing steel from 2011 to 2015.
North and South America had twelve countries producing steel from 1967 to 1977, then rose to fourteen countries from 1978 to 1988. The number of steel producing countries declined to eleven during the period of 1989 to 1999. From 2000 to 2010, North and South America doubled their number of steel producing countries to twenty-two and then dropped the number again to sixteen from 2011 to 2015
Africa on the other hand had four steel producing countries from 1967 to 1977 then added two more from 1978 to 1988. Africa maintained its two countries increase to land at eight countries from 1989 to 1999 then rose to almost double in 2000 to 2010 with a total of fourteen countries. Africa then lost one steel producing country from 2011 to 2015.
The Middle East had three steel producing countries from 1967 to 1977 then almost doubled it to five from 1978 to 1988. Thereafter, it dropped to four countries from 1989 to 1999 and rose to seven countries from 2000 to 2010. The following five years saw an addition of one country producing steel in the Middle East.
Asia currently homes the biggest steel producing country, China and Asia had thirteen countries producing steel from 1967 to 1977. The number dropped to eleven from 1978 to 1988 then rose by one from 1989 to 1999. From 2000 to 2010, Asia maintained its rise to sixteen countries then from 2011 to 2015, Asia added one more country. Lastly, Oceania remained constant at two steel producing countries from 1967 to 2015.
Supply and Demand – It is evident from the statistics that as we approached the 20th century, steel began flooding the market therefore supply and demand became a factor. Because supply was higher than demand, steel prices began to fluctuate causing the prices in metal buildings industry to fluctuate as well.
Regardless, metal buildings have become more popular and are favored because:
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