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Stainless scrap makes gains amid hectic nickel market

Global – Stainless steel scrap prices have made further strong progress since late January, with the 304 grade advancing from US$ 1240-1290 to US$ 1290-1340 per tonne and the 316 quality from US$ 1560-1610 to US$ 1630-1680.

Despite shifting ferrous prices, chrome scrap values have remained within their existing ranges of US$ 320-360 per tonne for 409 material and US$ 420-460 for the 430 quality.

News from the Philippines of the closure of over 20 more mines for environmental reasons boosted the nickel quotation but this was countered by Indonesia’s decision to lift export restrictions on nickel ore.

The International Nickel Study Group has reported a nickel deficit for 2016 of 49 700 tonnes, a figure far lower than the 80 000 tonnes anticipated at the beginning of the year. Production of primary nickel amounted to 1 983 500 tonnes – the second-highest total ever – while its usage in 2016 reached an all-time high of 2 033 200 tonnes.

Across the first 10 months of 2016, EU-28 stainless steel scrap imports were 25.2% lower than in the corresponding period of 2015 while exports slumped 56.6%, according to Heinz H. Pariser Alloy Metals & Steel Market Research.

The full version of Recycling International’s latest Nickel & Stainless report will appear in its 2/2017 issue.

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