Stainless steel import scrap prices in India increased slightly for SS 304 and 316 solids while other grades fell amid low demand from Indian importers. The official three-month nickel contract fell by $39/mt to $13,734 on Monday from the prior week.
In India, import prices of SS 316 and 304 solids increased from the prior week despite a fall in LME price, unlike in Taiwan where prices of imported SS scrap grades declined in line with the LME. The Davis Index for 304 (18-8) solids Tuesday rose by $6/mt to settle at $1,188/mt cfr India port from the prior week and the index for SS 316 rose by $4/mt to $1,795/mt cfr India port. Importers said that demand from stainless steel mills improved slightly this week as companies are ramping up production. LME molybdenum rose to $15,934/mt ($7.13/lb) up by $220/mt from the prior week supporting prices of 316 solids.
In Taiwan, the Davis Index for 304 (18-8) fell by $15/mt to $1,125/mt cfr Taiwan port from the prior week while the index for 316 solids settled at $1,685/mt cfr Taiwan port in line with the slight drop in LME nickel.
Stainless steel mills in India have reduced their orders for scrap compared to pre-COVID-19 levels amid high scrap inventories. Imports of SS grades including Zurik and 430 solids have reduced due to low demand. The Davis Index for Zurik Tuesday settled at $895/mt cfr India port, marking a drop of $15/mt from the prior week. The weekly index for 430 solids fell by $8/mt to $400/mt cfr India port on Tuesday.
Demand for stainless steel scrap in India has returned, but bids placed by importers are much lower than global prices. Indian mills have inventories that could suffice them for almost two months, said traders. If demand from utensil, railings, interior manufacturers improves, mills will have to ramp up production and increase scrap purchases.