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Aluminum alloy A380.1 prices weaken

Keywords: Tags  A380.1, secondary aluminum alloy, LME, mill-grade aluminum scrap, automotive, Nathan Laliberte

NEW YORK — Prices for secondary aluminum alloy A380.1, primarily used in automotive production, weakened slightly over the past week, with major consumers lowering quotes by about a penny.

One producer source indicated that he would no longer concede to pricing pressure from consumers. "I don’t know what the other guys are doing, but we are drawing a line in the sand and saying we are not going to sell domestic production alloy below a certain level," he said. "We are not doing huge quantities, but we are making deals at higher levels than we have in recent months."

Most producers put A380.1 in a range of $1.03 to $1.05 per pound vs. $1.03 to $1.06 previously.

A second producer source claimed that $1.05 was virtually unattainable in the current market. "Anyone that says they are selling at or above $1.05 is either selling something super-specialized or is flat-out lying," he said. "People won’t pay over a certain threshold right now. It’s that simple."

Others noted that demand from the automotive sector, which has been quite robust throughout the summer, may be showing signs of slowing down. "The car business seems to be pretty strong, though I get the feeling that it’s not as strong as everyone says it is," a source at a major die caster told AMM. "We just don’t seem to be as busy as we were last year. We can’t raise quotes with that kind of uncertainty."

Meanwhile, prices for mill-grade aluminum scrap moved mostly in step with a slight decline on the London Metal Exchange. Prices for 5052 segregated low-copper alloy clips fell to 87 to 89 cents per pound Aug. 22 from 89 to 91 cents previously, 3105 clips edged down to 79 to 81 cents per pound from 80 to 82 cents, mixed low-copper alloy clips slipped to 77 to 78 cents per pound from 78 to 79 cents and painted siding decreased to 74 to 76 cents per pound from 75 to 77 cents.

The primary aluminum cash contract on the LME ended the official session Aug. 22 at $1,857.50 per tonne (84.3 cents per pound), down 0.8 percent from $1,872.50 per tonne (84.9 cents per pound) at the beginning of the week.

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