Residual ferrous trading finalized in the South on Monday after most regions finalized prior to the weekend. Many Midwest markets describe the monthly transactions as straightforward, with secondary grades falling by $50/gt, shredded dropping by $60/gt, and primes unchanged. In the South and Southeast, prime grades also traded sideways but secondary grades traded down $50/gt across all markets against January settled prices.
Some pockets on the East Coast witnessed additional price softness as exports to Turkey are anticipated to remain weak until buying for March shipments picks up later this week. The daily Davis Index for Turkish imports of US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) fell $84.61/mt to $397.50/mt cfr on Feb 8 compared to $482.11/mt cfr on Jan 12.
The monthly Davis Index for shredded in Pittsburgh declined by $74/gt to $394/gt delivered with sales ranging from $385-400/gt. The larger drop was due to certain premiums, which were paid last month when demand was stronger, fading. P&S 5ft settled at $400/gt delivered, falling by $61/gt while #1 busheling remained unchanged at $498/gt delivered.
The monthly Davis Index for fob Buffalo dealer fell by $55/gt for #1 HMS to $345/gt shipping point with some sales as low at $335/gt shipping point. Lack of remote demand and a mill that bought at down $75/gt, brought prices down beyond the trend for this grade.
Closer to the Midwest, in Cleveland, the monthly Davis Index fell by $62/gt for shredded to settle at $403/gt delivered while #1 HMS declined by $52/gt to $370/gt delivered.
In Houston, the monthly Davis Index for #1 busheling increased by $2/gt to $504/gt delivered, as #1 HMS fell by $50/gt to $380/gt delivered, P&S5ft dropped by $49/gt to $399/gt and shredded declined by $51/gt to $406/gt delivered. Machine shop turnings also faced the same price decline as the index fell by $50/gt to $355/gt delivered.
The monthly Davis Indexes in Birmingham decreased by $3/gt on #1 busheling to $494/gt delivered, fell by $52/gt on #1 HMS to $360/gt delivered, dropped by $54/gt to $378/gt delivered for P&S 5ft, and declined by $50/gt to $395/gt delivered for shredded.
Market sentiment for March is mixed. Some believe that secondary grades may rise modestly as the weather will affect inbound and outbound scrap, which would potentially lead to delayed deliveries to mills. While not a gain on January scrap prices, several communicated they believe that prices could gain $10-30/gt in March on tight supplies.
Some market participants also expect exports to regain momentum in late February as Chinese and Asian buyers return to the market. Other market participants, however, feel scrap may remain soft until mid- to late-Q2 2021.