The weekly spreads for US domestic copper scrap grades narrowed slightly during the week, as prices moved lower in tandem with a falling Comex market.
Comex hit its high point for the year at $3.12/lb on Sep 18 but has reversed its trend since then with the spot market closing at $2.98/lb on Tuesday, down from $3.055/lb on Sep 22.
The spread for US bare bright copper scrap (barley) was tighter by 1¢/lb at 13.5¢/lb, under the September Comex contract on Tuesday, while the weekly Davis Index for bare bright decreased by 2¢/lb to $2.84/lb delivered US consumer.
The spread for #1 copper (berry/candy) narrowed by 1¢/lb to 21¢/lb under the September Comex contract, with the weekly index for the grade declining by 6.8¢/lb to $2.77/lb.
The spread for #2 Light copper was better by 1¢/lb at 41.5¢/lb under the September Comex contract, though the grade’s index decreased by 6¢/lb to $2.565/lb.
The copper scrap market is struggling with high costs and low availability of freight. Dealers are complaining about being forced to move material around due to this reason resulting in added costs and reduced margins in an already challenging environment. Consumers expect the last half of Q4 2020 to get better, but the market has plenty of scrap for the time being.