NEW YORK Spreads on
copper scrap narrowed and prices on brass scrap items fell
Thursday, reflecting a sudden drop on Comex earlier this
Spreads on No. 1 copper scrap
fell to a discount of 15 to 18 cents per pound off Comex copper
prices from 17 to 20 cents previously, putting prices at
$3.54 to $3.57 per pound Thursday. Spreads on No. 2 copper
scrap narrowed to a discount of 39 to 41 cents per pound off
Comex prices from 39 to 42 cents a week earlier, putting prices
at $3.31 to $3.33 per pound.
A rebound in Comex prices
Thursday was not reflected in scrap prices, with both buyers
and sellers saying they would wait to see if the market
stabilized next week. Comex copper for May delivery closed at
$3.7205 per pound Thursday, up from $3.6395 per pound Wednesday
after Comex prices plunged 7 cents to $3.65 per pound
Scrap sales slowed after the
sudden Comex drop Tuesday, one trader said. "I think if the
drop were to go through next week . . . some would
start selling, but with the market climbing today, well
see," he said. "Its slow. Scraps tight, the
markets coming down, its a very weird market."
"The only thing we can be sure
of is that the markets are going to change," a second trader
said of the copper price volatility.
"The markets being gamed,"
one ingot maker source said.
Meanwhile, the domestic market
is in relative balance between supply and demand, a second
ingot maker source said. "There isnt much scrap out
there. There isnt much business."
Prices for some brass scrap
weakened as buyers used the Comex drop as an opportunity to
push for lower prices. The range for radiators narrowed to
$2.25 to $2.27 per pound from $2.25 to $2.28, while red brass
prices fell to $2.67 to $2.70 per pound from $2.70 to
"With red brass, the drop is
related to Comex," the second trader said. "We broke through
the floor of $3.70 per pound on Comex."
A lack of demand is of more
concern to consumers, the second ingotmaker source said. "The
only thing Im concerned about is the lack of business.
... There hasnt been any pickup in demand this