The number of years that scrap prices have risen across the board in a May market during the past decade. Prices have fallen four times, been sideways once and have seen mixed results in three other years. This makes May a unique month in that no clear direction can be gleaned from historical numbers. Past changes suggest a toss up.
The Scrap Trends Outlook trend number for mill factors, which include perceived demand, orders, production, inventory, home/captive scrap and slowdowns. This means that the market believes mills and foundries will be at or slightly above their performance from April, which could keep prices from falling and may help push scrap values upward.
The percentage of respondents to this month’s survey who expect May prices to be sideways or up. Only six percent say a decrease is possible. However, a majority – 60 percent – are looking for no change at all. But the remaining 34 percent who say increases are coming tilt the overall trend forecast slightly toward a more bullish market next month.