NEW YORK Prices
for 300-series stainless steel scrap have taken another hit
along with plunging terminal nickel markets, while 400-series
stainless has risen on the back of higher iron prices.
buying prices for 304 solids dropped to $1,175 to $1,230 per
gross ton from $1,200 to $1,255 previously, while 316 solids
dropped to $1,825 to $1,900 per ton from $1,850 to $1,925.
Dealer prices also
fell, with 304 solids at 40 to 42 cents per pound (f.o.b.
Pittsburgh) vs. 42 to 44 cents previously.
broker/processor buying prices for 400-series stainless scrap
strengthened, with market participants attributing the move to
rising iron prices. The price range for 430 solids widened to
$425 to $465 per ton from $425 to $450 previously, while 409
solids moved up to $375 to $425 per ton from $350 to $400.
The cash nickel
contract on the London Metal Exchange closed the July 9
official session at $13,160 per tonne ($5.97 per pound), down
5.4 percent from $13,915 per tonne ($6.31 per pound) a week
told AMM that falling nickel prices and a lack of
trading activity continues to pressure 300-series prices.
"People are very
nervous about July and August. The U.S. market is lagging
behind everyone else, so a lot of people are exporting now. You
can get 58 to 59 cents per pound export for 304, so basically
the numbers are better elsewhere," one processor source
business remains "ultra-competitive," a second processor source
said. "Its difficult. The mood of consumers is very
cautious. Theres a reason for their very conservative
business stance: Nobody in the stainless sector has had a
reasonable chance at profitability for quite a while, and
prices are likely to fall further, one dealer source said,
noting that a processor reportedly dropped its buying prices by
7 cents per pound ($157 per gross ton), creating significant
pressure on dealer margins. "Its like 2008. Its
becoming quite traumatic," he said.