US weekly lead scrap and battery prices trended sideways on Wednesday amid supply concerns depending on the grade and material being traded.
The official three-month LME Lead contract increased by $47/mt from Jul 28 to close at $2,391/mt today.
Lead scrap prices trended sideways on Wednesday for the second successive with the weekly indices for heavy soft lead and mixed hard lead declining by 0.2¢/lb to 86.5¢/lb delivered and 82.5¢/lb delivered US consumer, respectively, as supply and demand balanced. The closure of some smelters for maintenance over the summer months has impacted lead scrap prices but not as much as those for scrap batteries, which continue to be pressured by abundant supply.
The weekly Davis Index for whole undrained batteries inched up by 0.2¢/lb to 30.6¢/lb delivered US consumer on Wednesday. The batteries market continues to grapple with supply outpacing demand. The dearth of buyers due to smelter closures has only increased the gap, which is likely to remain until the end of August.
The Davis Index Lead ingot premium increased by 0.5¢/lb to 18¢/lb. The refined lead market continues to see limited supply with any material coming into the market being taken up by buyers who have existing contracts. As a result, spot deals remain almost non-existent with sellers offering the grade at higher premiums.