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Steel production jumps in China, United States

A worker prepares to unload steel coils from the 655-foot ship Irma at the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor in Portage in 2015. Steel production rose 5 percent across the globe in November, according to the World Steel Association.

The United States produced 6.2 million tons of crude steel in November, a 6.8 percent increase year-over-year, according to the World Steel Association.

Steelmakers across the globe made 132.4 million tons of steel in November, a 5 percent increase as compared to November 2015. Capacity utilization in the 66 steelmaking counties the Belgium-based trade association tracks rose to 69.6 percent in November, up from 67.1 percent worldwide in November last year.

But international capacity utilization, a key metric to measure the health of the industry, is down from its 2016 high of 71.5 percent in April.

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China, the world's largest steelmaker by volume, forged 66.3 million tons in November, an increase of 5 percent year-over year, according to the World Steel Association. China, which imported steel made in the United States to fuel its building boom as recently as a decade ago, made more than 10 times as much steel as America did last month.

Production rose in Italy, France, Turkey, Russia, and Ukraine in November. France had the biggest year-over-year jump of 11.8 percent last month.

Steel output fell in Japan, Germany and Brazil last month. Brazil's production declined most dramatically, dropping by 4.8 percent to 2.4 million tons in November.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.