Domestic lead scrap and ingot prices increased this week as demand firmed in Delhi and Mumbai. The market in Mumbai was impacted by heavy rainfall, with both production and supply of scrap slowing down amid a major hiccup in transpiration.
The weekly Davis Index for secondary lead ingot for Delhi settled at Rs160,667/mt ($2,154/mt) ex-works producer, up by Rs1,250/mt driven by a rise in battery scrap prices and healthy demand from battery makers. The weekly Davis Index for lead batteries (drained) on Wednesday settled at Rs95,333/mt del Delhi consumer, up by Rs3,000/mt. Some offers heard at around Rs100,000/mt, but lower bids pushed prices down later in the day before the time of publication.
Delhi and Mumbai’s lead markets strengthened in terms of spreads compared to the prior week. The official three-month LME rose slightly by $3.5/mt or by 0.15pc on Tuesday from a week ago but domestic prices moved more in line with local market sentiment. Scrap prices rose over the week as markets continue to improve from the lows of the recent lockdown.
With the strong revival in the auto sector, the market has gained momentum over the past few weeks. Demand for zinc and lead scrap grades has increased mainly due to better demand from automakers and auto ancillaries suppliers. The ramp-up in auto production has resulted in improved demand for lead batteries.
Industrial battery and automotive batteries also have a booming export market, and with the regional lockdowns now either lifted or eased, domestic demand will boost consumption. The weekly Davis Index for secondary lead ingot for Mumbai settled at Rs160,790/mt, flat to up by Rs590/mt, and the index for lead batteries (drained), Wednesday, settled at Rs95,750/mt del Mumbai consumer. Prices are up as demand from smelters continues to grow.
Some smelters in both Delhi and Mumbai shared that demand is increasing at a faster pace than production, which could lift prices in the coming weeks. Secondary lead manufacturers may not be able to cater to rising demand, said Delhi-based smelters. Imported secondary lead ingot or remelted lead ingot is priced Rs15,000/mt more than local products. With the fall in the Indian rupee, the price of imported material would be relatively higher.