The Stainless Steel Monthly Metals Index (MMI) dropped two points again this month, now down to 67. The index stayed relatively flat during the past few months since jumping in February from 61 to 68. Several prices in the index dropped significantly this month. Most prices declined more moderately, in the 1% to 3% range, with a couple of prices holding steady. The LME nickel price declined 2.5% between May and June. During the first week of June, LME nickel prices dropped further but still managed to hold above $11,600/mt as of press time. According to the International Stainless Steel Form (ISSF), stainless steel melt shop production increased by 5.4% to 50.7 million metric tons in 2018, up from 48.1 million metric tons in 2017. The organization forecasts continued growth in 2019. In 2018, China accounted for 52.6% of global stainless steel production, according to ISSF. The U.S., meanwhile, accounted for 5.5% of global production. In absolute terms, the United States produced approximately 2.8 million tons of stainless steel last year, including slab and ingots. Nickel pig iron production from China and Indonesia will increase in 2019, as it did during 2017 and 2018, which wi...