US stainless steel processor buying prices decreased across all grades on Friday by 2-4¢/lb amid falling LME nickel prices.
The daily Davis Index for scrap 304 solids fell by 3¢/lb to 43.5¢/lb delivered processor yard and declined for 316 solids by 3.7¢/lb to 61.3¢/lb for single truckloads.
The index for scrap 304 turnings dropped by 2¢/lb to 39.5¢/lb and weakened for 316 turnings by 4.2¢/lb to 52.3¢/lb.
LME nickel prices decreased by $8/mt from Thursday with the official three-month LME nickel contract settling at $12,192/mt on Friday. The official cash contract closed Friday at $12,120/mt, down by $13/mt from Thursday.
The stainless-steel scrap market has been volatile over the last few weeks with demand from the domestic mills and for exports dropping significantly due to the pandemic.
Many processors have paused on buying more scrap for now amid uncertainty over demand in June, leading to a decline in buying prices. On the other hand, some processors do not have any material and are paying higher prices to stock up in anticipation of stronger demand in June.