US zinc secondary alloys prices regained most of their losses from the past two weeks, rising by 2.5-3.5¢/lb on Tuesday after the LME zinc market began moving up again in the new year.
The official LME Zinc cash offers closed Tuesday at $1.2633/lb, up from $1.2472/lb last week, while the official three-month LME Zinc contract increased by $39/mt from last week, closing Tuesday at $2,811/mt from $2,772/mt on Dec 29.
The weekly Davis Index for Zamak #2 rose by 2.4¢/lb to $1.498/lb delivered US consumer. Zamak #5 increased by 3.2¢/lb to $1.488/lb delivered, while both Zamak #3 and Zamak #7 jumped by 3.5¢/lb to $1.473/lb delivered on Tuesday.
The index for ZA grades rose higher than Zamak grades, with ZA 8 increasing by 3.4¢/lb to $1.528/lb delivered US consumer, while ZA12 rose by 4.1¢/lb to $1.504/lb delivered. ZA 27 saw the highest surge of all alloy grades, increasing by 4.5¢/lb to $1.558/lb delivered US consumer.
The recent rise in construction spending along with robust macroeconomic factors and the reshoring of business from China has created a positive market sentiment across the industry.
Producers also see demand for zinc alloys picking up, though some are wary about new customers holding back from purchases. In fact, some customers might wait for another price correction before re-entering the market in the new year, according to market participants. However, if demand remains strong, buyers might be compelled to make their purchases at elevated prices throughout Q1 and Q2 2022, some producers indicated.