Lead and battery scrap prices in the US were sideways-to-soft Wednesday amid LME volatility.
The weekly Davis Index for whole undrained batteries was flat at 32.9¢/lb delivered US consumer on Wednesday as supply and demand were balanced.
The LME Lead market continued falling for a second week this month, with the official three-month LME Lead contract closing Wednesday at $1,787/mt, declining by $34.50/mt from $1,821.50/mt on Oct 7.
Although LME Lead price volatility affected neither supply nor demand, it weakened scrap battery prices, according to some market participants, causing a regional variance. In some regions across the Midwest, battery scrap was picked up for 30-32¢/lb, while it trended in the 33-34¢/lb range in the South. Market participants expect declines on the LME through the remainder of the year, which could affect battery prices moving forward.
Lead scrap prices continued trending flat-to-down for the second consecutive week, with market participants expecting an additional decline in scrap prices amid abundant supply and tepid demand.
Soft lead prices inched up slightly, with the Davis Index for heavy soft lead rising by 0.1¢/lb to 67.7¢/lb delivered US consumer, while hard lead fell by 0.4¢/lb to 62.5¢/lb delivered on Wednesday.
The depressed LME market also caused lead ingot premium prices to decrease slightly. The Davis Index for lead ingot premiums fell by 0.1¢/lb to 9.2¢/lb under the three-month LME Lead contract.