NEW YORK Most copper scrap grades saw discounts slip May 15 as market participants said that downward movement on Comex had caused spreads to tighten slightly.
The discount for brass ingot makers No. 1 bare bright copper scrap decreased to 3 to 5 cents per pound below Comex from a 5- to 7-cent discount a week earlier, putting prices at $3.22 to $3.24 per pound based on a July-delivery Comex copper contract settlement price of $3.265 per pound May 15. Discounts for No. 1 copper scrap fell to 13 to 15 cents below Comex, putting prices at $3.12 to $3.14 per pound, compared with a 14- to 16-cent discount previously.
Comex wants to go lower; it has to go lower, one copper scrap trader said. We might see Comex at $2.80 per pound before we see $3.50 per pound. If it continues to weaken, we will see discounts narrow even further.
However, the July Comex contract inched up 0.9 percent May 16 to settle at $3.2945 per pound.
Discounts for brass mill No. 1 copper scrap fell to 2 to 4 cents below Comex from 3 to 5 cents previously, putting prices at $3.23 to $3.25 per pound.
Meanwhile, prices for most grades of brass scrap decreased May 15, with sources indicating that domestic demand had weakened over the past week.
Red brass (No. 1 composition solids) fell to $2.51 to $2.55 per pound from $2.53 to $2.58 previously, composition borings and turnings to $2.48 to $2.53 per pound from $2.50 to $2.55, and radiators to $2.10 to $2.13 per pound from $2.12 to $2.15 per pound May 8.