Mexican steel scrap prices keep rising on strong busheling demand

Ferrous scrap prices in Mexico went up another level in the week ended Friday March 19, amid a continuing rally in prime scrap values.

Demand for prime grades of scrap continued to rise during the week, with sellers being successful in getting better deals. Price increases from the previous week came into full effect, and there were also reports of fresh price rises from some steelmakers in both the Bajío and Monterrey regions.

For obsolete grades, prices also edged upward, especially in cut plate and structural scrap (P&S), motivated by the increase in busheling prices.

As a result, deals for No1 busheling at 10,000 pesos ($484) per tonne and above became more frequent during the week, while in previous weeks such deals had been rare.

Fastmarkets’ assessment of the steel scrap, No1 busheling, consumer buying price, delivered mill Monterrey, was 10,000 pesos per tonne on March 23, up by 650 pesos per tonne from 9,350 pesos per tonne a week earlier.

The corresponding assessment of the steel scrap cut structural/plate 3ft max, consumer buying price, delivered mill Monterrey, rose by 350 pesos per tonne to 9,650 pesos per tonne on Tuesday, from 9,300 pesos per tonne.

Also on March 23, Fastmarkets assessed the steel scrap, No1 busheling, consumer buying price, delivered mill Bajío, at 9,650 pesos per tonne, up by 150 pesos per tonne from 9,500 pesos per tonne, and the steel scrap No1 heavy melt, consumer buying price, delivered mill Bajio, at 7,750 pesos per tonne, flat week-on-week.

Prices of No.1 busheling were under greater upward pressure in the northern Monterrey area, because the region was more seriously affected by a strong rise in prime scrap prices in the United States in early March. Despite the increase in prices, sellers and buyers saw no signs of lack of supply for this grade.

Fastmarkets monthly assessment of the steel scrap No1 busheling, consumer buying price, delivered mill Chicago, was $550 per gross ton on March 5, up by $70 per ton from the previous month’s level of $480 per ton.

Market participants believed that the prime scrap market in the US could reach a plateau in April, with buyers already beginning to posture for sideways pricing.

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