Prices for US zinc scrap were flat across most grades Thursday, as supply and demand of the material achieved equilibrium after surging last week.
The weekly Davis Index for new zinc diecast lost some of the gains it made last week, declining by 1.7¢/lb to 78¢/lb delivered US consumer. The index for zinc galvanizers bottom dross held at 75¢/lb delivered US consumer, while zinc galvanizers top dross inched down by 0.1¢/lb to 71¢/lb delivered.
The index for special high-grade zinc premium was unchanged at 8.8¢/lb delivered under the three-month LME contract, as supply and demand were in balance despite LME zinc prices decreasing.
This week, LME zinc trended down slightly after prices climb to their highest levels last week since November. The three-month official LME zinc contract closed Thursday at $2,482/mt, decreasing by $6.50/mt from $2,488.50/mt on August 20.
Rising steel demand in China is supporting global zinc prices. According to the latest World Steel Association data, steel production in China rose by around 9pc last month. Demand for zinc, which is used to galvanize steel, improved as a result.
Whether or not the US market follows this trend is yet to be seen because domestic steelmakers have only just started increasing their output. Presently, domestic supply and demand of the galvanizing metal are balanced, causing small price movements, according to market participants.