US aluminum export prices felt the weight of the sluggish domestic secondary aluminum market and trended sideways through the week even as offers at higher prices flooded the Southeast Asian markets without much success.
The weekly Davis Index for 95/2 Zorba ticked up from 40¢/lb fas US ports to 40.1¢/lb and increased by 0.6¢/lb for 99/3 Zorba to 45.2¢/lb fas US port on Thursday.
The index for Taint/Tabor decreased by 0.9¢/lb to 41.3¢/lb fas US ports and increased by 0.3¢/lb for Tense at 41.3¢/lb fas US port.
Aluminum-copper radiators moved up by 2.7¢/lb, to $1.14/lb on the strength of the copper market. The Comex jumped by more than 10¢/lb from last week, pushing up against the $2.50/lb mark.
The official three-month LME aluminum contract increased by $37/mt to close Thursday at $1,561/mt from $1,524/mt on May 28.
Buyers have been able to keep export aluminum prices flat because of less competition for aluminum scrap in the US.
Market participants expected robust demand from China and news of India clearing the backlog of containers at its port to prop up the US aluminum exports market against renewed demand from domestic automotive manufacturing. However, that has not been the case. Automotive supply chain issues have prevented carmakers from ramping up to forecasted production levels, pushing down the demand for aluminum products used in the manufacturing process.