US weekly brass scrap spreads were rangebound on Friday amid mixed market trends. Demand remains high and has resulted in an increase in spot-buying activity despite the volatility in Comex copper and LME Zinc prices.
Comex spot copper contract closed at $4.46/lb up 13¢/lb from Jul 16 while the spot LME zinc official cash contract decreased by $22/mt to $2,944/mt over the same period.
The weekly Davis Index for C-200 series alloy’s copper spread widened by 0.3¢/lb to 11.6¢/lb under the Comex copper spot contract, while the C-200 series zinc spread, widened by 0.2¢/lb to 6¢/lb under the LME zinc cash contract.
Demand remains strong in the brass market with orders and sales outpacing production at many brass mills. This has resulted in higher spot trades this week. Some other mills have already completed their buying for the month but are still willing to purchase some grades even at higher prices to meet their production needs. On the other hand, high freight costs and a strengthening Comex may soften demand in the near term.
Brass scrap prices increased for most grades with the weekly Davis Index for 360-rod borings climbing by 0.5¢/lb to $3.024/lb delivered US consumer. Brass radiators increased by 1.5¢/lb to $2.555/lb delivered, while red brass solids rose 0.9¢/lb to $3.289/lb delivered.
Given the rising number of COVID-19 cases with the Delta variant in the US, some participants are gauging the market to see if these would impact trade as much as the first wave last year. If the lockdowns do happen, it remains to be seen if they would be at the same levels seen last year and how that would impact the domestic and global supply chain.