The prices for US zinc scrap increased in the first week of January in tandem with a rise in LME Zinc prices and an active market after the Christmas and New Year holidays in the US.
The LME Zinc market made up for its losses from the past two weeks with the three-month official LME Zinc contract closing on Thursday at $2,863.50/mt up by $91/mt from $2,772.50/mt on Dec 31.
Galvanizer grades increased in tandem with LME Zinc as well as the higher domestic ferrous markets, which opened trade up $90-100/gt on Jan 5. Thus, the weekly Davis Index for zinc galvanizers bottom dross rose by 2.2¢/lb to 78.7¢/lb delivered US consumer. Zinc galvanizers top dross increased by 1.9¢/lb to 75.7¢/lb delivered.
The weekly Davis Index for new zinc diecast also inched up as demand from the automotive industry resumed after the holiday lull. New zinc diecast prices improved by 1.7¢/lb to 81.7¢/lb delivered US consumer, while special high-grade zinc premiums, remained at 8¢/lb under the three-month LME Zinc contract.
Demand for zinc scrap from steelmakers as well as the automotive market is expected to remain stable or inch up slightly in January because of which SHG premiums may remain within the 8-8.5¢/lb range during the month, according to some market participants. Dross grades could move higher as demand for finished steel improves.