NEW YORK West
Coast exporters of containerized ferrous scrap are pushing for
price increases into Taiwan and other Southeast Asian countries
following a week dominated by stronger domestic sales.
increases in a range of $15 to $20 per gross ton from the few
domestic mills that West Coast companies can ship scrap to left
many exporters with no immediate need to negotiate prices with
Asian buyers, resulting in very few trades this past week,
reported price offer ranges of anywhere between $355 and $365
per ton for an 80/20 mix of No. 1 and No. 2 heavy melt scrap
delivered to Taiwan.
A few sources
speculated that embattled finished steel prices and demand from
countries like Taiwan, Indonesia and Malaysia will make it
tough for exporters to raise prices any further.
"(Taiwanese) mills are
reluctant to take orders because they are not selling their
inventory well. I think the market can go down because they
have bulk cargoes coming in December and will not need a lot of
scrap," said one exporter.
A larger number of
sources, however, argued that tighter supply of scrap and
higher domestic prices give them enough ammunition to demand a
"I am expecting a
total of $10 increase on containers by next week after three
weeks of the same prices. We did not sell this week as we
anticipate the market is moving upward next week," a second
exporter said Nov. 7.
A third exporter said
that Asian buyers will be forced to raise prices if they need
U.S. scrap since exporters have found enough demand
"We can find no one in
Asia who is buying at the momentalthough if you sell
cheap there may be some buyers out there. Taiwan is basically
dead. Vietnam will buy but U.S. domestic prices are high enough
that loading containers doesnt make sense. With India
dead and Turkey dropping prices it appears that export will be
difficult for the next few weeks," he said.
said China continues to be well behind other countries on price
bids, while buyers in Indonesia are fighting off recent
increases in price offers.
A trader in China said
he expects price bids from Taiwan and other Southeast Asian
countries to inch higher gradually but ruled out any big moves
price is still far behind the others in all of Asia. Except
(two large Chinese producers), almost no Chinese buyer can
afford to buy any bulk scrap cargo over $380 per tonne for HMS
1&2 (80:20)," he said. U.S. bulk offers to South Korea and
China, meanwhile, were reportedly at $395 per tonne and higher,
A mill buyer in
Indonesia said his mill has put a hold on buying while it
navigates current price offers.
"I have found that
prices of container cargoes were up from the last two weeks. We
are getting offers of shred at $395 to $400 but are on hold as
we see these prices are high in relation to our sales prices,
which have a resistance to increase," he said.
A fourth U.S. exporter
reported a late-week sale of No. 1 heavy melt into Taiwan at
$375 per tonne, suggesting that "the market is up between $15
and $20 right now."