US stainless steel processor buying prices dropped for some grades and rose for others on Wednesday as strong mill demand and falling LME Nickel prices continued to pull the market in two directions.
The weekly Davis Index for 201 solids inched down by 0.1¢/lb to 38.9¢/lb delivered processor yard on Wednesday and fell for 301 solids by 0.2¢/lb to 57¢/lb for single truckloads.
The index for scrap 309 solids increased by 0.2¢/lb to 91.2¢/lb delivered and jumped for 310 solids by 1.6¢/lb to $1.416/lb delivered. The weekly Davis Index for 330 solids climbed by 2.2¢/lb to $2.315/lb delivered processor yard.
The index for 409/410 solids, on the other hand, decreased by $1.5/gt to $323/gt delivered processor yard and dropped by $5.6/gt to $427.7/gt delivered for 430 solids.
Stainless steel domestic mill demand has remained strong since November leading to increases in stainless steel processor buying prices. However, declining LME Nickel prices have caused stainless prices to dip, albeit slightly as demand continues to drive the market. Processors believe that the strong demand will continue into the next month as well, but a continued fall in LME Nickel could cause prices to diverge depending on grade.
The daily Davis Index for scrap 304 solids rose by 0.2¢/lb to 67.7¢/lb delivered processor yard and jumped up by the same amount for 316 solids to 87.7¢/lb for single truckloads.
The index for scrap 304 turnings inched up by 0.2¢/lb to 62.7¢/lb delivered and it rose for 316 turnings by 1.1¢/lb to 80.8¢/lb for single truckloads.
LME nickel prices dropped by $247/mt from Tuesday with the official three-month LME Nickel contract settling at $16,747/mt on Wednesday. The official cash contract closed Wednesday at $16,691/mt, down by $222/mt from Tuesday.