US weekly export copper scrap spreads narrowed on Wednesday following a drop in Comex copper.
Exports, which had begun to pick up pace last week, remained muted on Wednesday as buyers retreated until the volatility on Comex and LME copper subsides. That said, the steep declines in Comex have tightened the spreads as exporters look to strike better deals at lower prices.
The next active Comex copper contract decreased by 21¢/lb to $4.32/lb today from Jun 9 after sliding on news of the Federal Reserve’s planned rate hikes. Moreover, concerns over China’s policies to curb high prices of metals have also kept the markets subdued this week.
The Davis Index weekly spread for bare bright (barley) tightened by 0.6¢/lb to 16.9¢/lb under the next active Comex copper contract, while #1 copper wire & tube (Berry Candy) narrowed by 0.7¢/lb to 25.8¢/lb under the next active Comex.
Transaction prices for copper scrap grades decreased on Wednesday with bare bright dropping by 22¢/lb to $4.14/lb fas US port and #1 copper wire & tube moving down by 21¢/lb to $4.05/lb fas US.
The Davis Index weekly spread for export #2 copper (Birch Cliff) widened by 2.5¢/lb to 62.3¢/lb under the next active Comex copper contract on a deal heard at wider spreads for a small load to Europe. The grade’s outright price decreased by 24¢/lb to $3.69/lb fas US port.
Asian buyers have retreated from the market and the only deals being heard are for small loads to Europe and South America. Scrap flows also remain sluggish with the market volatility adding to weak trading this week. In the near term, participants expect exports to remain quiet until more Asian buyers return to the market.