Stainless steel scrap consumer buying prices have risen on the
strength of primary nickels higher August average, but
the market could be in for a sharp decline next month if
exchange prices continue to fall through September, sources
monthly consumer buying price for Type 316 solids rose to
$1,900 to $1,975 per gross ton from $1,875 to $1,950
previously, 304 solids increased to $1,400 to $1,475 per ton
from $1,390 to $1,450 and 304 turnings rose to $1,250 to $1,300
per ton from $1,225 to $1,275, while 430 bundles stayed flat at
$590 to $610 per gross ton and 409 bundles were steady at $510
to $535 per ton.
The London Metal
Exchanges three-month nickel contract averaged $14,359.53
per tonne ($6.51 per pound) in August, up 4.2 percent from
$13,781.42 per tonne ($6.25 per pound) the previous month.
With September nickel
prices plunging toward July levels and LME nickel stocks
continuing to rise, some sellers expect consumer buying prices
"Its fallen off
in the last few days as the nickel price has trailed off. ...
Were seeing where the big players are playing with their
price. The price is floating around based upon the need to get
material through the plants rather than what the market
indicates," a processor source said.
"It was overwhelmingly
the difference between July and August nickel," a second
processor source said of increasing consumer buying prices.
The nickel price has
"subsequently given all of that back; nickel now is under the
July average. Were under water from July, but no one can
tell you whether that will last," he said. "Of course,
its also about how much (consumers are) melting. Melt
rates have been average, and it feels like theyre staying
that way. Scrap availability is maybe getting tighter, so that
may lead toward an incremental increase in pricing."