US aluminium scrap markets in state of flux due to trade policy changes

A wave of volatility has swept through aluminium scrap markets in the United States due to drastic trade policy changes, with mill-grade and smelter-grade prices moving in opposite directions.

“The [US] Midwest premium and the [London Metal Exchange] have seen knee-jerk reactions, and mill-grade scrap spreads are opening up with all the uncertainty. But on the secondary side zorba is staying in the States with not a lot of places to sell, so the scrap markets are moving in a couple different directions,” one US supplier source said.
Primary aluminium prices soared following the sanctioning and freezing of assets held by Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska and UC Rusal by the US Department of the Treasury last week.

The LME’s three-month aluminium contract closed at $2,122 per tonne (96.3 cents per lb) on Monday April 9, up 6.7% from $1,988 per tonne on April 6. The contract climbed further...


Bradley MacAulay

April 11, 2018

02:46 GMT