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US ferrous scrap export prices to Turkey fall

Keywords: Tags  ferrous scrap exports, Sean Davidson

NEW YORK — U.S. ferrous scrap export prices to Turkey have dropped more than $10 per tonne after an exporter broke a two-week lull and booked a bulk sale Wednesday.

Market participants in both countries reported the sale of a mixed bulk cargo carrying an 80/20 mix of No. 1 and No. 2 heavy melt and shredded scrap as Turkish mills resumed activity and, in the process, picked up an additional cargo from the United Kingdom. Both cargoes have traded for prompt delivery, sources said.

The U.S. bulk cargo sale was reportedly completed at $396 per tonne c.f.r. Turkey for HMS 1&2 (80:20) and $401 per tonne for shredded scrap, sources said. Information varied on the volume of each grade, with the heavy melt component said to be between 30,000 and 35,000 tonnes and shredded between 5,000 and 10,000 tonnes.

The price indicates at least a $12-per-tonne drop from previous U.S. sales, which were completed in a range of $408 to $410 per tonne c.f.r. Turkey two weeks ago.

On Wednesday, a second Turkish mill picked up a bulk cargo from the United Kingdom at $395 per tonne for HMS 1&2 (80:20), sources said. Details of another cargo sale from the United Kingdom to Turkey also emerged on Wednesday, but sources said the trade was completed late last week at $404 per tonne c.f.r. for a full bulk cargo of shredded scrap.

Buyers and traders in Turkey said they weren’t surprised by the large price drop.

"When I have heard the counters of Turkish buyers are at $390, I was expecting to hear sales from (the United States) at between $395 and $400 (per tonne). So I am not surprised," one source said.

"The funny thing is that (one U.S. exporter) is sill quoting high numbers while competitors are trying to sell at these levels. I will not be surprised if I hear $390 (for a sale) tomorrow," he added.

Sources dubbed it a buyer’s market, noting that with reinforcing bar prices in Turkey’s local market at $605 to $610 per tonne, even $390 per tonne for U.S. HMS 1&2 (80:20) could seem high to some buyers.

Suggesting that $390 per tonne was the next price target for buyers in Turkey, a second source said he was surprised not by Wednesday’s $396-per-tonne trade but rather the "promptness of the cargo."

A third source said freight rates from the United States to Turkey were hovering between $29 and $30 per tonne for handysize cargoes and between $24 and $25 per tonne for large Supermax cargoes, but cautioned that the supply of the larger vessels was "tightening up."

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