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E. Coast ferrous scrap tags hold as volumes slip

Keywords: Tags  ferrous scrap export prices, heavy melt, shredded steel scrap, plate & structural, Sean Davidson

NEW YORK — U.S. East Coast ferrous scrap export prices held steady this past week despite lower volumes, with only two confirmed bulk cargo sales to Turkey.

Market participants noted a sale at a composite price of $457.50 per tonne c.f.r. for one bulk cargo containing an 80/20 mix of No. 1 and No. 2 heavy melt, shredded steel scrap, and plate and structural scrap.

A second cargo sold at $452 per tonne c.f.r. for 80/20 heavy melt, $457 for shredded and $462 for plate and structural scrap. The $452 price for 80/20 heavy melt indicates a sideways market compared with a week earlier, when bulk heavy melt sold to Turkey in a range of $451 to $453 per tonne c.f.r. (AMM, April 10).

One large exporter said the market was "sideways firm" this past week.

"You can’t go by one or two cargoes to call the market. It’s sideways, but it’s not going down. Business is good, and there’s not a lot of inventory on the East Coast," he said.

Sources said U.S. exporters continued to receive numerous inquiries for scrap from Turkey.

East Coast shippers of containerized scrap also reported a sideways market, as container supply remains a concern.

Container freight costs have kept a lid on prices to India, but there has been barely any buying interest, sources said.

Container shred offers stand between $490 and $495 per tonne c.f.r. Nhava Sheva, India, while containerized 80/20 heavy melt offer prices range from $465 to $475 per tonne c.f.r. Nhava Sheva.

One container exporter said he had concluded sales of shredded scrap at $438 to $440 per tonne f.a.s. New York. Shredded scrap sold to Chennai at $490 per tonne c.f.r, indicating a freight cost of $50 per tonne to the southern Indian port.

"Sales on container movement are all based on if you have a booking. . . . You can buy in the market if you have a booking, as all sales have been week by week instead of everyone selling at the start of the month," a second containerized scrap shipper said. "United Kingdom pricing is coming off a little bit, so it should be interesting to see . . . what effect that has on the India market."

A third container exporter said that quotes out of the Mid-Atlantic region were "steady to up a few bucks" compared with two weeks ago. The market recorded the increase around April 5, mostly due to freight increases.

India was still offering the best price for containerized shredded scrap, but "you cannot get it there," one large broker said, noting that one shipping company has indicated it will not ship any scrap metals to India.

A few others, however, said they had no difficulty shipping containers to India. "Indian buyers are still looking, despite freight increases," an exporter in the Mid-Atlantic said. "They want more, but we’re sold out."

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