The Copper Rollercoaster May Crash Soon

We saw a lot of crazy in the market last week, but that seems normal these days. We saw the stock market drop over 1000 points one day but 800 points the next day, and somehow both of those days are close to being the market end. This affects the Scrap market because any instability will have a distressing factor in the trivial world markets, whether commodity oriented or stock oriented.

The good news is that markets still seem to be holding their ground, showing that the world economy is still moving at a solid and steady pace while slowing, which is a positive outlook for the rest of the year. One market that has started to show more signs of life lately has been the nickel market, which includes different grades of stainless steel. These markets have seen nice price increases to levels we haven’t seen in years.

Over the past two weeks, we’ve seen copper rise and fall by a total of about $1 per pound. We saw $0.11 down and $0.16 up on the daily, up and down with some changes. These are not seen as positive signs, as they seem to have found a copper bottom, but show that world investors are not entirely optimistic about where the markets might go.

Aluminum prices have been hit slightly, but as with most non-ferrous markets there is a nice rebound right now when they come together.


Non-Ferrous Price Chart of the Week

It has been a sideways market for the last 2-3 weeks. We expect steel prices to remain relatively stagnant for the next 4 to 6 weeks. With major world factors such as the price of oil and potential market disruptors for natural gas, we may begin to see some deadlock on the steel front for the foreseeable future. This could take another two months as world events and oil prices work on their own.

As one of the slower times of the year, we have traditionally seen steel prices drop after Christmas and before Easter as markets tend to take a break from the year-end holiday bustle. If you think your scrap yard is the only place that lowers steel prices, don’t worry; happening across the country.

Iron Price Chart of the Week

Scrap Batteries From normal alkaline batteries to lead-acid batteries, I have become one of the hardest materials to transport in the country. These materials have become less desirable as new products such as lithium batteries and other battery classes become available. They have reduced the scrap value of many conventional batteries and increased the cost of getting rid of already expensive batteries to transport.

Other metals like castings and zinc have remained in slow-moving price ranges as we try to follow them and see what happens. Zinc has a very strong appearance as it is very often used to coat different grades of steel.

Catalytic Converter Prices

We’ve seen catalytic converter prices soar across the country in recent weeks, with higher-than-expected price increases. With scrap prices in all three precious metal groups holding steady for the past two weeks or showing small increases from day to day, we have seen the markets recover nicely and put the catalytic converter markets back in a strong position. Combined with the fact that automakers are removing more cars from the market and continuing to use more precious metals to generally improve emissions standards, catalytic converter scrap values ​​will remain high for most of the year.