Dockside ferrous scrap prices on the US West Coast rose on Tuesday, this week after trending flat over the past month. The trend opposed the East Coast, which remained flat or adjusted downward on the changes in Turkish import scrap deals that moved the Davis Index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) down by $15.93/mt to $484.89/mt cfr from $500.82/mt cfr on Tuesday week-on-week.
On the West Coast all three regions of Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Portland saw increased prices on tight scrap inventory, vessel fulfillments, competing rising container prices, and overall expectations that ferrous scrap will be sought by export markets after some ongoing holidays and COVID-19 concerns have economies return to usual activities.
Several market participants reported that US ferrous August domestic scrap prices could decline $20-30/gt but such will give exporters an opportunity to place more material off the East Coast as export prices were cost-prohibitive for some buyers. Off the West Coast, demand continues from Mexican steel mills and US domestic mills.
Additionally, some market participants also postulate that scrap yards want to be ready for the demand that could build as a result of less domestic scrap in buying countries in Asia as a result of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions. Iron ore prices dipped $3/mt to $218/mt cfr China on Fe 62pc on Tuesday against a week ago which continue supporting strong ferrous scrap prices.
Japanese export softened offers slightly amid softness in Japanese Kanto tender but finished steel prices rose. Domestic scrap prices were predominantly flat in Taiwan and South Korea while domestic scrap prices fell in domestic Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.
The weekly Davis Indexes in Portland for export yard scrap rose for #1 HMS by $13/gt to $394/gt delivered, P&S 5ft climbed by $11/gt to $415/gt delivered, and shredder feed increased by $20/gt to $297/gt delivered export yard.
The San Francisco weekly Davis Indexes also trended up with #1 HMS rising by $13/gt to $373/gt delivered, P&S 5ft increasing by $16/gt to $385/gt delivered, and shredder feed up by $13/gt to $267/gt delivered.
In Los Angeles, the Davis Index dock prices rose by $14/gt on #1 HMS to $355/gt delivered. P&S 5ft climbed by $13/gt to $364/gt delivered, and shredder feed grew by $17/gt to $268/gt delivered.
Los Angeles container prices have increased by $5/mt to $415-420/mt fas on HMS 1&2 (80:20) from the more common levels of $410-415/mt fas heard last week. A few market participants did express concern that containers could adjust down in August with a downward US domestic ferrous move, while others expect container activity to surge in August-September.