Ferrous scrap prices stretch gains, rising over $130 a ton

Dec 09, 2008 | 11:17 AM | Michael Marley

Ferrous scrap prices are extending their gains, rising by more than $130 a long ton in some of the major steelmaking markets since the start of the month, but few see the steep rise as any sign of a near-term rebound in either prices or demand for scrap.

Instead, many see the increase as an effort to draw obsolete material into the scrap stream, which had all but shut down in several regions due to the steep price cuts imposed by steel mills in November.

Despite paying higher prices for scrap, several steel mill buyers said their mills are still curtailing output this month, not just because of the upcoming Christmas holidays but also due to the weak demand for finished steel products.

While much of the monthly buying was finished in the major steelmaking markets, industry sources said prices still hadn't settled in some of the outlying regions because of the absence of the mills that normally buy part of their monthly melt from these remote scrap suppliers.....

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