Higher prices trigger stronger metal flows

United States: For many of the leading non-ferrous metals, there has been notable price progression since it was confirmed that Donald Trump had won the race to the White House. These elevated price levels have encouraged a flood of material on to the markets, with the result that many warehouses are full and buyers are therefore less enthusiastic when it comes to booking appointments.

LME cash prices are at the following per-tonne levels (the corresponding figures from our non-ferrous metals report at the end of November are given in brackets): aluminium US$ 1800 (US$ 1765); copper US$ 5720.50 (US$ 5562); lead US$ 2303 (US$ 2174.50); zinc US$ 2723.50 (US$ 2571.50); and tin US$ 21 100 (US$ 21 465).

After 11 months of 2016, US exports of aluminium scrap amounted to just short of 1.245 million tonnes and so were approximately 14% short of the 1.443 million tonnes recorded for the corresponding period of the previous year, according to America’s Census Bureau and International Trade Commission. US shipments to China slumped 20% year on year to 633 426 tonnes.

US Commerce Department figures indicate that, year on year, the nation’s copper scrap exports were some 3% lower in the first 11 months of 2016 at a fraction under 950 000 short tons. The decline in overseas shipments during November owed much to a 10% slump in deliveries to leading market China.

US zinc scrap exports were almost sliced in half through the first 11 months of last year: total overseas shipments tumbled below 30 000 short tons after being just short of 58 000 short tons in January-November 2015, the Commerce Department has revealed.

 

The full "Market Analysis Non-Ferrous" will be featured in the upcoming issue (#1) of Recycling International.



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