Ferrous Scrap

Prime scrap tags level in May, shredded and HMS slip

Written by Ethan Bernard

Domestic scrap prices this month were flat for prime material but down for HMS and shredded, scrap sources told SMU.

“May trading for obsolete grades ranged anywhere from sideways in Philadelphia to down $10-20 in other regions of the country,” one scrap source said.

“Export pricing has been reasonably steady over the last few weeks, which was the main impetus for the sideways move near the coast,” he added.

However, the source noted that further west, mills attempted and were somewhat successful in pushing prices lower. 

“The further west, the weaker the market,” he said.

Another source commented that prime grades remain unchanged.  

“Apparently, steelmakers felt like this grade needed support due to decreased generation,” he said.

Looking ahead, the first source observed that sentiment for June is unsettled.

“Now that the HRC (hot-rolled coil) price is perceived as falling and not yet at bottom, demand may not pick up quickly enough to prevent a lower market next month,” he said.

On the other hand, he noted, “a stabilization in finished steel prices would trigger the next round of buying and theoretically better demand for scrap. So we’ll have to wait and see.”

The second source agreed, saying prospects for June are mixed right now, “but a large move either way doesn’t seem likely.”

SMU’s May scrap pricing stands at:

  • Busheling at $400-420 per gross ton (gt), averaging $410, flat from April.
  • Shredded at $385-395/gt, averaging $390, down $12.50 from April.
  • HMS at $310-330/gt, averaging $320, down $10 from April.

Ethan Bernard

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