Coated HSS Tools Remain Fabrication of Choice, Accounting for 70% of Overall Sales: FMI Study

Feb 26,2019 | Industrial Automation & Equipment

Sales of high-speed steel (HSS) tools in 2019 are estimated at nearly 218,000 thousand units, projected to register a Y-o-Y growth at 4.8% over 2018, according to a new study of Future Market Insights (FMI). HSS tools sales have witnessed sheer proliferation, despite intense competition from solid carbide tools, as these are best suited for shop production environments, wherein tool cost and versatility are of paramount importance. 

The study opines that coated HSS tools will retain their supremacy, with nearly 70% share in the market. Although HSS tools have gained widespread acceptance in the metalworking and machining industries globally, additives such as powder metallurgy provide higher alloy-content which imparts a combination of attributes including hardness, toughness, and wear-resistance. Coated HSS tools have been deemed effective in light of their performance in high feed and speed rates, and productivity, as well as in complex machining processes and dry operations. 

HSS tools continue to gain ground, adapting with new coating technologies and adjusting their composition accordingly, thereby retaining their position as vital materials in machining and metal cutting industries. Additionally, coated HSS tools remain the fabrication of choice in metal cutting and machining operations, despite the intense competitive nature of the cutting tool industry. 

Drills Account for 4 in 10 Sales of HSS Tools Sales

Sensing varied requirements of tools for machining and metalworking operations, manufacturers of HSS tools have introduced myriad products, which range from drills and mills to cutters and reamers. The study estimates sales of drills will relatively larger from all the other variants, and are estimated to account for nearly 4 in 10 sales in 2019. However, mills, cutters, and reamers are also expected to remain lucrative in the HSS tools market

In order to uphold growing demand for HSS tools, manufacturers are committing extensive resources to drill design and development efforts. Investment by HSS tool manufacturers have resulted in significant optimization in reliability, quality, cost of production, and lead times, and addition of enhanced substrates continues to remain instrumental in enhancement of HSS tool performance. 

For More Detailed Insights on HSS (High Speed Steel) Tools Market

Shifting Demand within Customer Base Driving Adoption

Automotive & fabrication industries continue to remain largest adopters of HSS cutting tools, accounting for over half volume share of the market in 2018, according to the study. Approximately 121,000 thousand units of HSS tools are expected to be sold in automotive & fabrication industries in 2019. Shifting customer demand toward application-specific and indexable tools with removable cutting tips, in light of their simplified repair procedures and cost-effectiveness, has been influencing the growth of the HSS tools market

Growth of the HSS tools market is also expected to be affected from significant demand in the cyclical industries, which oscillate between contraction and expansion. Vendors who seek protection from economic turmoil are expected to benefit from the orthopedic and surgical HSS tools in the long run. 

“Local distributors possess a vast experience in diverse catalogs, providing first-line input on selection and utility-related aspects of HSS tools with respect to their application. This factors has been discouraging customer purchases through online channels, as customers consider advertisements and referrals for cutting tools while choosing vendors, which is relatively less prevalent in online sales platforms,” says a lead analyst at FMI. 

Key players operating in the HSS tools market are focusing on strengthening their distribution footprint to keep pace with growing demand and gain coverage in lucrative locations. As distributor recommendations continue to play a pivotal role in HSS tool sales for vendors, long-term partnerships and strategic agreements with these distributors continues to remain a key growth strategy for players in the HSS tools market. 

This study also offers an accurate forecast of the HSS tools market for the period 2018 to 2028. The HSS tools market is foreseen to record a CAGR of 5.5% through 2028. For more insights on the HSS tools market, contact our analysts at

About Industrial Automation & Equipment division of FMI

The Industrial Automation & Equipment division at FMI adopts a novel approach and innovative perspective in analyzing the global machinery and industrial automation market. A range of FMI’s market research reports offer comprehensive coverage of capital, portable, process, construction, industrial, and special purpose machinery used across manufacturing sector. The team also conducts distinctive analysis about installed base, consumables, replacement, and USP-feature application matrix, making us a prominent voice of authority in the industry. We are associates of choice for established as well as budding industry stakeholders and channel partners when it comes to sustain, grow, and identify new revenue prospects.

About Future Market Insights (FMI)

Future Market Insights (FMI) is a leading provider of market intelligence and consulting services, serving clients in over 150 countries. FMI is headquartered in London, the global financial capital, and has delivery centres in the U.S. and India. FMI's latest market research reports and industry analysis help businesses navigate challenges and take critical decisions with confidence and clarity amidst breakneck competition. Our customized and syndicated market research reports deliver actionable insights that drive sustainable growth. A team of expert-led analysts at FMI continuously track emerging trends and events in a broad range of industries to ensure that our clients prepare for the evolving needs of their consumers.

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