US export copper scrap spreads weakened over the past week on a strong Comex copper market, which closed higher on Wednesday than on any day in 2020, hitting a mark not seen since February 18, 2013.
The next active Comex contract closed on Wednesday at $3.65/lb, up from $3.55/lb on Dec 30.
The weekly Davis Index for #1 copper wire and tube increased by 9.3¢/lb to $3.41/lb fas US port. Simultaneously, the #2 copper index stepped up by 9¢/lb to $3.16/lb fas on Wednesday. Bare bright (barley) increased by 9.9¢/lb to $3.495/lb fas US port.
The Davis Index spread for #1 copper wire, and tube (berry/candy) widened by 0.7¢/lb to 24¢/lb fas US ports under the next active Comex contract, while the #2 copper (birch/cliff) spread was worse by 1¢/lb at 49¢/lb fas, under the same contract. The spread for bare bright (barley) was worse at 15.5¢/lb fas under the next active Comex contract, off by 0.1¢/lb.
Export copper spreads continue to remain wide with varying interest levels from consumers. Still, they are expected to tighten as copper scrap exports step into the first quarter of 2021, with more activity expected from market participants. Concerns over the COVID-19 related shutdowns in the UK and Canada have consumers worried about supply moving forward, but better flows are expected out of the US.