Domestic raw steel production ending the week of Oct. 31 increased one percent compared to a week earlier. Production was 1,557,000 net tons for the week ending Oct. 31 compared to 1,542,000 net tons the previous week, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute.

The capability utilization rate, a measure of how domestic blast furnaces are operating, was 70 percent for the week ending Oct. 31, up from 69.7 percent a week earlier.

Domestic steel production has been inching up since dropping to a capability utilization rate of near 50 percent earlier this year. On a year-to-date basis, raw steel production through Oct. 31 was 65,806,000 net tons. That compares

to 81,154,000 net tons during the same week in 2019.

Northeastern Minnesota's taconite plants produce iron ore pellets, the primary raw material used to make steel.