NEW YORK Stainless scrap
prices have risen due to improved mill demand, although some
sources assert that they have failed to see a pickup.
"Things have become a little bit
more robust. The years off to a good start and February
looks like its going to be pretty good, too," one
stainless scrap processor said.
"This is the restocking month
for us," a purchasing source confirmed, adding that his
companys stainless production was set to increase
significantly in January.
A broker source agreed with the
assessment that mills were buying more early in the year, but
he added that there was some question regarding how long the
pickup would last.
"There are orders out there for
January and there will be continued demand for February. Beyond
that, it is a question mark," he said.
Processors are now buying 304
clips and solids at $1,725 to $1,790 per gross ton, up from
$1,680 to $1,750 per ton previously, and 316 clips and solids
at $2,375 to $2,420 per ton, up from $2,310 to $2,350 per
However, a second processor said
he failed to see a significant pickup in January. "I dont
see a whole lot happening at this point. In years past in
January, they (the mills) have been busy as hell," he said.
A third processor agreed that
January demand had been rather tepid, saying that some mills
had purchased more in December and subsequently hadnt
increased their purchases for January as much as expected.
"Its kind of evened out," he said.
The rise in buying prices comes
even as nickel prices on the London Metal Exchange have fallen
over the past few days, with the cash contract closing the
official session at $17,145 per tonne ($7.78 per pound)
Tuesday, down 0.4 percent from $17,215 per tonne ($7.81 per
pound) a day earlier and 2.3 percent below the
$17,540-per-tonne ($7.96-per-pound) level seen Jan. 3.