Our Metal Price Trends series provides monthly insight into industry news and economic activity affecting global metal prices, and empowers Metal Supermarkets customers to make timely and informed decisions when purchasing metal.
In November 2014, prices increased in Aluminum and Cold Rolled, but decreased in Hot Rolled Steel and Stainless Steel.
In the U.S.A, manufacturing slowed slightly in November, but continued increases of new orders and a recovery in exports, indicates that the domestic economy is on a firm footing, despite slowing growth in other regions around the world.
Aluminum – In November, prices have increased from the previous month. Aluminum demand around the world (outside of China) is estimated to grow 3-4 percent in both 2014, and 2015. Aluminium demand has increased over the last year in all regions and market segments, including transport and electrical. There have been some unforeseen production cut backs. Alcoa’s Warrick smelter in Indiana lost one of five lines due to a fire at the start of October; the lines are anticipated to be back online around the middle of December.
Carbon Steel – In November, the price of Hot Rolled decreased and Cold Rolled prices increased. While steel demand remains weak in Europe, China and Brazil, it is expected that U.S. steel consumption will be even higher than previously envisaged. The U.S. steel mills, have cited strong demand from the auto, appliance and oil and gas industries, as well as lower energy costs. Globally, the construction sector, which uses about half of the world’s steel, has also slightly improved from 2013.
Stainless – In November, the prices of Stainless Steel decreased further. Because of the poor market conditions in Europe, suppliers from that area have been offering much lower prices; this in turn has put pressure on domestic pricing. In the USA, sales remain steady. While business has not returned to pre-inflation levels yet, costumer confidence has improved due to lower oil prices.
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