U.S. laundry applicance producer Maytag said it may have to slap higher prices on some of its dealers for the second time this year to cover the soaring cost of steel and other materials.
Maytag is said to be reviewing its options for a future price increase but has not yet reached a decision, according to a company spokesperson. Maytag raised the prices it charges some appliance retailers back in April.
Steel prices, which have raised sharply throughout the world, are already hurting profit margins at U.S. appliance makers, which typically hold relatively short 12- to 18-month contracts with steel suppliers, according to market analysts.
Maytag warned in late July that it would face significantly higher steel costs in the second half of the year. That same month, the Newton, IA, U.S.-based company reportedly signed new 18-month contracts with their suppliers at this summer's elevated metals prices.
Currently, the contract price for hot-rolled steel sheets is U.S. $350 a ton, while the spot market price has soared to $800. (Investor's Business Daily)
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