Prices for US zinc scrap trended sideways across all grades, as demand softened amid worries about rising COVID-19 infections across the country.
The weekly Davis Index for new zinc diecast was flat at 75.8¢/lb delivered US consumer on Thursday. The index for zinc galvanizers top dross and zinc galvanizers bottom dross also remained unchanged at 69.7¢/lb delivered US consumer and 72.7¢/lb delivered, respectively, as most galvanizing lines were offline in a quiet market.
The index for special high-grade zinc premium held at 8.5¢/lb delivered, under the three-month LME contract, as inventories for the material rose.
Supply constraints have kept the market muted despite an initial surge in demand when manufacturing facilities restarted operations in late May and early June. Moreover, uncertainty took hold of the zinc market last week on news that commodities trader, Traxys, announced plans to shut down its lead and zinc trading operations in North America.
Rising COVID-19 cases, especially in the sunshine states, have conjured reminders of stay-at-home orders, shutdowns, and subdued demand, making it difficult for suppliers to gauge the demand and price trends in this market. Eight US states—Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, North and South Carolina, Texas, and Utah—have seen surges in COVID-19 cases after they reopened for business earlier this month.
After increasing last week, LME zinc prices declined in a quiet market, with the three-month official LME zinc contract closing Thursday at $2,036/mt, down by $7/mt from $2,043/mt on June 18.