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Kallanish Kallanish

Knowledge matters Knowledge matters

February, 25th 2020

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OCT 21

US scrap market expects 2019-low prices to rebound


Scrap prices in the US domestic market are thought to have bottomed and are expected to see a correction in the November buy-cycle. Prices decreased $35-40/tonne for prime grades and $30-35/t for obsolete grades, depending on region, in the October buy-cycle.

As domestic demand for finished steel continues to be sluggish in the USA, steel mills across the country have cut production. However, as flow into yards has slowed significantly as a result of year-low prices, and the strike at GM continues, market players believe there is no more room for scrap prices to decrease further.

Although a huge increase is not expected, the rebound in export prices and the price difference between export and local market has improved market sentiment. With November approaching, it seems like prices in the US south and southeast regions could strengthen, while other regions are likely to remain under pressure and show less improvement.

On the export market, ex-US HMS I/II 80:20 prices kept increasing last week. In the latest confirmed booking in Turkey, ex-US HMS I/II 80:20 stood at $244/t cfr, $18/t higher compared to September pricing. However, prices on the West Coast have not recorded such a big increase like on the East Coast.

Local market prices in both Japan and South Korea have recorded a decrease, while domestic prices in Taiwan recorded no change. This situation has apparently continued to put West Coast export prices under pressure.

Kallanish increased its weekly US HMS I/II 80:20 scrap fob East Coast price assessment to $211-213/t on Monday, up $8.5/t on-week.