The Davis Index weekly US export copper scrap spreads varied according to grade amid a volatile Comex copper market, which closed at its highest point since February 2013 last week.
The next active Comex contract closed on Wednesday at $3.62/lb, down from $3.65/lb on Jan 6. The market had reached the $3.70/lb mark on Jan 7.
The weekly Davis Index for #1 copper wire and tube fell by 3¢/lb at $3.38/lb fas US port. Simultaneously, the #2 copper index stepped down by 3.1¢/lb to $3.129/lb fas on Wednesday. The bare bright (barley) index decreased by 2.5¢/lb to $3.47/lb fas US port.
The Davis Index spread for #1 copper wire, and tube (berry/candy) was flat at 24¢/lb fas US ports under the next active Comex contract but weakened for #2 copper (birch/cliff) by 0.1¢/lb to 49.1¢/lb fas under the same contract. The spread for bare bright (barley) was tighter at 15¢/lb fas under the next active Comex contract, better by 0.5¢/lb.
The copper market was poised to make a forceful entry into 2021, but news of the COVID-19 pandemic’s resurgence in China has stalled market participants’ plans. Many US suppliers are still uncertain about what to do with or how to handle #2 copper after the new quotas for copper scrap were released by China late last year. Some have created a new category to control the material they believe will not pass muster in China’s custom process. As a result, some copper units are stranded in the marketplace for now.