Prices of most of the stainless steel scrap imported in India increased on the back of higher offers on Tuesday. Prices increased by around $25/mt from the prior week with 316 prices gaining the most while 304 remained on the same level as last week.
The weekly Davis Index for 316 solids on Tuesday settled at $2,240/mt cfr India port, up by $24/mt driven by high offers. Deals were heard at around $2,230-2,250/mt cfr India port. The weekly Index for 304 (18-8) settled flat at $1,646/mt cfr India port. Offers for European origin exceeded $1,700 cfr India port level, which was not workable for most mills. Mills were bidding under $1,630/mt cfr India port on Tuesday.
Bids from Indian mills and consumers were way below the current offers which resulted in very few sellers being active in the market. Mills in India are trying to procure materials at a very low price which is not feasible for the sellers after nickel prices tumbled.
With the number of COVID-19 cases increasing at an alarming rate, market sentiment is low amid looking fear of a stricter lockdown. This has pressured domestic prices which is also why bids for imports were lowered.
The weekly Davis Index for 430 solids on Tuesday settled at $648/mt cfr India port, up by $8/mt. Offers were heard around $670-680/mt cfr India port. Bids were heard at around $600-620/mt cfr India port. Deals mostly happened around $650/mt. The weekly Index for Zurik 85/3 on Tuesday settled at $1,387/mt cfr India port, up by $13/mt. Also, ferrous scrap prices have gained traction over the week which supported Zurik and 430 solids’ prices. However, LME copper contract dipped by 2pc or by $173/mt to $8,764/mt on April 1. Demand is stable but the market for stainless steel is still rangebound since nickel’s collapse in the beginning of March.
Nickel LME three-month contract dipped by $254/mt to $16,302/mt as on April 1 as London was closed for Easter holidays. Imported SS prices across grades increased as offers were raised despite LME’s decline. LME nickel is, however, expected to gain now. The US President’s emphasis on infrastructure is likely to push metal prices higher as demand would increase.
Taiwan SS imports
The wekly Davis Index for 304 (18-8) solids for Taiwan settled at $1,434/mt cfr Taiwan port, up by $16/mt on Tuesday. The weekly index for 316 solids on Tuesday for Taiwan settled at $2,240/mt cfr Taiwan port, up by $22/mt. Imported ss scrap prices for Taiwan have fallen since nickel dropped sharply on the London exchange. 304 and 316 solids prices have fallen almost 4-5pc or by $76-80/mt, to around $1,435/mt for 304 and 316 was around $2,110/mt as on April 6 from March 2. As scrap prices fell, several Taiwanese mills reported a drop in stainless steel product prices of 300 series for April.