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East Coast Export Index slips on weak sales

Keywords: Tags  scrap, ferrous scrap, scrap exports, scrap prices, AMM Index, heavy melt, shredded scrap, bonus scrap Sean Davidson

NEW YORK — U.S. exporters logged just two bulk cargo ferrous scrap sales to Turkey last week, pressuring prices as the market chased weak sales previously concluded out of Canada.

A single exporter booked both sales to two different Turkish mills last Wednesday. The first sale was confirmed as having been concluded at $384 per tonne c.f.r. Turkey for an 80/20 mix of No. 1 and No. 2 heavy melt. Reports of this sale emerged last week (, Dec. 6). The same exporter then completed a second bulk sale at $383 per tonne c.f.r. Turkey.

Both cargoes will reportedly carry at least 40,000 tonnes of heavy melt, with the remainder expected to be filled with shredded scrap, which traded $5 per tonne above the HMS 1&2 (80:20) price.

A Canadian exporter earlier last week reportedly sold three bulk cargoes of No. 1 heavy melt, shredded and bonus-grade scrap to Turkey at a composite price of $380 per tonne c.f.r. (, Dec. 3), according to market sources.

Market sources expect last week’s bulk cargo sales to ship out of two different ports: one on the U.S. East Coast and the second on the Gulf Coast, they said.

The sales caused AMM’s East Coast Ferrous Scrap Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) to slip Monday to $361.40 per tonne f.o.b. New York from $364.92 per tonne previously.

The sheer volume of heavy melt in the cargoes could have attracted a slight premium, one source said, while a second source said freight rates have inched higher this week.

The sales surprised many market players, who claimed U.S. offers to Turkey had been higher all week. A few sources valued U.S. HMS 1&2 (80:20) at $387 to $390 per tonne c.f.r. Turkey, based on a mixed cargo sold at an average of $392 per tonne out of Europe just one day prior to the U.S. sales.

"In my opinion, European HMS 80/20 has to be $380 and USA has to be $390. The market is now on the way up," a source in Turkey said after the European sale.

The U.S. sales were probably weaker due to the low benchmark set by the Canadian sales, some sources said Monday.

One exporter shrugged off the development. "Due to the winter coming, we expect a rising price market," he said.

"Now that the U.S. domestic market went sideways, I would have to think export offers from U.S. suppliers will firm up," another source said.

On the West Coast, market participants said there had been no bulk sales this past week, leaving AMM’s West Coast Ferrous Scrap Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) unchanged Monday at $364.50 per tonne f.o.b. Los Angeles.

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