Stainless steel scrap prices have risen in November following a
relatively strong month for nickel, with traders noting a
slightly improved appetite for material.
processor buying price assessment for stainless steel scrap
showed Type 316 material rose to a range of $1,905 to $1,950
per ton from $1,860 to $1,920 previously, 304 bundles, solids
and clips moved up to $1,410 to $1,455 per ton from $1,380 to
$1,425 and the range for Type 409 material widened to $510 to
$545 per ton from $510 to $535.
Both mill and
processor sources confirmed the rise in prices, which
correspond with stronger nickel on the London Metal Exchange.
The LMEs three-month nickel contract averaged $14,135.54
per tonne ($6.41 per pound) last month, up 2 percent from
$13,852.50 per tonne ($6.28 per pound) in September.
"The mills have
demonstrated a slightly more aggressive attitude toward buying
in November," one processor source said, citing "a slight
increase in appetite" from two major consumers. "We expect
slightly better margins this month," he added.
Still, most brokers
remained wary of what the market holds in November and
December, traditionally slow months for the industry, with
several noting a dip in nickel prices below $14,000 per tonne
in early November.
pressure for the mills to raise prices dramatically because the
overall melting levels are not that great," a second processor
"Things have trailed
off a little bit," a third processor said when asked how nickel
prices had affected the market. "(Last) week, when Europe
brought interest rates down, copper went down 3 to 4 cents and
nickel came down. And I think its going to stay there for
Inventory levels at
mills are at "a comfortable level," he added.