German scrap market expects bearish prices in November

German scrap prices increased in some parts of the country this month, according to local scrap market participants. Most sources continue to expect the market to be very sluggish in November, with sales low and customers adopting a wait-and-see attitude. The main reason for this remains high energy costs and low purchases by steel mills.

Prices in some parts of Germany have increased only for old scrap by €5-10/tonne ($4.9-9.7/t), a buyer tells Kallanish.

Nationwide average prices for old thick scrap sort 3 are at €360/t. The price for new scrap sort 2/8, meanwhile, fell to €350-360/t. E40 shredded scrap has reached €370/t.

In Austria, scrap prices also changed in October depending on the sort. Old thick scrap sort 3 increased to €360/t but new scrap sort 2/8 fell to €355/t.

“There were some exports to Turkey and Italy, but the volumes were again very low,” another merchant notes. “In Germany, prices increased slightly only for old scrap, which is more in demand. Downward pressure weighed primarily on new scrap, which is hardly in demand from flat steel producers due to the lack of new orders from the automotive industry.”

This month, German steel recyclers federation BDSV said skyrocketing electricity and gas prices in Europe pose major challenges for steel recycling and jeopardise the ambitious goals of climate neutrality and circular economy in Germany and at EU level (see Kallanish passim).

BDSV also urged more scrap transport by rail due to the ongoing logistics problems on road and waterway routes in Germany.

Most participants in the German scrap market expect prices to continue to be sluggish in November due to the same reasons like this month – high energy prices and low demand. This is causing great uncertainty among steel manufacturers.

Svetoslav Abrossimov Bulgaria