Copper Prices Had A Holiday – 4/7/21


Holiday Weekend Copper Jump ????

Scrap You Now, 

We hope everyone’s having a good week and we like seeing your stories coming through about all of the good scrap loads you’ve been working on. Don’t forget our new podcast, Scrap You Later, is out now, where we’ll give tips on how you can make more money with your scrap. The markets over the last week have started to react to the infrastructure plan as finances get worked out and we’ll follow that closely in the coming weeks/possibly months. 

One of the things that have confused us about the scrap industry is how much scrap yards want to hide versus what their customers want to find. We have found that through talking to people over the last few years, they just want to know what’s going on. We fully intend on letting people learn, talk, and link together in the scrap metal world.


Quick Numbers

  • 37 years – Factory activity in the US hit its highest level in 37 years in March, but it would’ve been higher had there been enough qualified workers to helm production lines. If anyone reading this is a trained welder, there’s a good-paying job for you.
  • 7,830 infections – Chile, the world’s top exporter in copper, closed its borders on Monday due to a rise in COVID-19 infections, 7,830, a daily record last week. This is probably the reason for the large copper price jump over the holiday weekend. 

Weekly Facebook Group Highlight

The Metal of the Month is Copper, and what better way to start off the month with none other than a copper car ???? Yes, you heard it here folks, A COPPER CAR. Below is a hand-formed, copper-bodied 1965 Shelby 427 Cobra, shared via our Facebook Group. And it can be yours too… for $475,000 ???? You can find more information on this beauty here. No matter the price, I think we can all agree this car is a work of art ????



Non-Ferrous Market News

Now let’s talk about a very confusing topic and exciting one: lead. While lead is probably not what you thought we were going to discuss, it has become one of the most flip-flop metals in recent years. As one of the main staples in the battery industry, lead-produced batteries have been on the decline for decades, we are now seeing. This soft and white metal has been the base for all car batteries before any type of hybrid existed. But as the battery market has really accelerated over the last few years, we have started to see the price of lead dropping significantly.

We’ve talked to auto battery recyclers and they say that the price drops are not only due to the future lack of demand for lead, but also the refining cost. As insurance and exposure rates have continued declining in smelting, markets and prices for scrap have suffered. This may be another victim of technology taking over and we may never see lead as heavily used as it was over the last 150 years, between plumbing pipes and car batteries.

Over the last week, we have watched copper, which has been relatively calm (other than some strikes in different mines that caused large jumps in the market on Monday) only to have those jumps dissipate over the next few days. Overall, we think copper is still headed in a very positive direction and minor speed bumps are expected along the way.

Reported Non-Ferrous Scrap Prices (03/31 – 04/06):




Delmar, DE Dirty Aluminum Rads $0.15 / lb
Rockaway, NJ #1 Bare Bright Copper Wire $3.50 / lb
Salina, KS Yellow Brass $1.70 / lb
Newark, OH Insulated Copper Wire $0.65 / lb
San Marcos, TX Lead Batteries  $0.13 / lb
Hugo, MN Aluminum Cans  $0.50 / lb
Huntington, WV #2 Copper Tubing $2.85 / lb
Milwaukee, WI #2/3 Mix Copper $3.17 / lb
Davenport, IA 316 Stainless Steel $0.82/ lb
Seguin, TX Sheet Aluminum $0.40 / lb
Gulfport, MS Non-Magnetic Stainless Steel  $0.46 / lb
Cambridge, Ontario* #1 Flashing Copper  $4.27/ lb

Ferrous Market News

Up, down, up, down, up, down, up, down. If that doesn’t make your head dizzy, we aren’t sure what will. With steel prices showing weakness over the last six weeks, we know that this is a normal occurrence, but not normally excepted. Going into the end of the first quarter and the beginning of the second quarter leads not only to questions but also to future growth. With things from infrastructure, to having people return to work, and foreign investments, we’re not sure where some of the steel markets are going to go anytime soon. Events like this Suez Canal boat getting lodged is a minor blip in the system and normally do not lead to large price swings over the long haul. 

Overall the market is slightly up over the last week by a few dollars per ton, but nothing too noticeable to talk about.

Reported Ferrous Scrap Prices (03/31 – 04/06):




Van Buren, AR Scrap Iron $80 / ton
Albuquerque, NM Shreddable Steel $110 / ton 
Birmingham, AL Shred/Tin $7.50 / CWT
Jacksonville, FL Cast Iron $9.25 / CWT
San Antonio, TX #1 Prepared $0.10 / lb
Tulsa, OK #2 Prepared $145 / NT
Joplin, MO Auto Cast $250 / NT
Charlotte, NC #1 Unprepared $6.50 / CWT
Waxahachie, TX Light Iron $0.07/ lb 
Chattanooga, TN Long Iron/#1 and #2 HMS Unprepared $7.50 / CWT
Ellaville, GA Scrap Iron $0.06/ lb 

Other Metal Markets

Aluminum’s rise should continue to be the talk of the scrap community with prices continuing to strengthen on boosted demand of technology and the auto sector. We have seen all grades of aluminum increasing in pricing, which has led to the national average continuing to climb.

Catalytic Converter Market News



Meeeeewwwoooooowwwwww… these prices are really rolling along and continuing to strengthen. Even though there has been a couple of weak points over the last couple of days, we have seen the markets strengthen in an overall positive way. This is not a market like many others, where you can just look up the news and see copper or iron prices. The catalytic converter market has three different metals, which we talk about regularly, that impact the market. These metals are used in very similar industries and at the same time, very different industries depending on what the metal actually is. That’s important because the overall demand for clean energy going up will continue to strengthen these catalytic converter prices.

One of the things that the team over at has continued to see is transparency from customers about their reactions to the price market. It’s not always the easiest thing to figure out but, we see such positive results, we figure you should try today, as well. 

Scrap Catalytic Converter Prices This Week (03/31 – 04/06):

Cat Type/Serial Number


EA6 $500/@
GD3 $900/@
JSH62 $476/ @
12606389 $464 /@
25130440 $403/ @
Small Foreign $150/ @
Regular Domestic $233/ @


Thank You.

If you made it to the bottom of this report, big applause goes to you. Our tip? Follow us and listen to the podcast episodes airing throughout the week to help you learn more and make more money on the strap market.

– Tom

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