Home steelworks for England have not yet set new prices for March, which traders believe is indicating a roll-over of prices from February.
According to MRW prices, Grade 4C has been trading at £220-230 a tonne since the steelworks set new steel values at the beginning of February. Scrap industry insiders speculate steelworks are uncertain of how the markets will behave for the rest of the month, which is causing the delay in setting prices.
Despite no indication from steelworks, scrap merchants are easing prices off domestic scrap for the month with news that the export market values have dropped as a result of a lack of confidence in the markets due to unrest in Libya. In the South, there is expectation that prices could drop further on the export market this month with some believing it could be by as much as £20 a tonne.
One insider said: “The international market is quite strong but it is being held back because of the disruption in Egypt and Libya. We have seen some spot-buying from Spain but if things remain unsettled in other parts of the world then we expect prices to come off further.”
Merchants in Scotland and South Wales report a £20 drop on dockside prices and homeworks prices respectively.