Stable Scrap Prices, Steel Demand Coming? – 3/17/21


Hope you get lucky today…

Scrappy St. Patrick’s Day! 

They say that on St. Patrick’s Day, everyone is Irish. So we continue to search for the pot of gold, otherwise known as Copper, but if you have a story about finding an actual pot of gold, we would love to interview you on our new podcast so let us know about it.

Over the last seven days, we have seen copper trading at a relatively steady pace, between the same $0.10 that either takes away or gives back day after day. This is not a bad trend, as it shows that there is market movement, but is becoming slightly more stable. As many predictions and economic forecasts have said, copper is going to continue to rally, not only this year but in the coming years. We look forward to these prices possibly staying this way for a long time.

Steel prices saw a nice increase towards the end of February and the start of March, but since then we have started to hear about decreases, anywhere from $10-$20 per ton. While the initial estimates for April were that the market would be higher, we have seen strong numbers nonetheless.

Quick Numbers

  • 1% – With one percent of the worlds Lithium mined in the US….we are very behind. They said that only 10% of the world wide deposits have been pulled up- so we hope that the US has a heavier hand.
  • 140,000 metric tons  – 140,000 vs 3000. That is the amount of weight that Australia mined of Lithium vs. the US (showing how far behind we are). 

Weekly Facebook Group Highlight

In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8th, we polled our Facebook group to see how many lady scrappers we have versus men. The results were not surprising, with less than half surveyed being women, HOWEVER proving that scrapping is a passion for both men and women alike. Be sure to check out and contribute to our weekly polls in the group, and if you’re not already a member, request to join today!


Non-Ferrous Market News

✨ Copper Shining

With copper prices continuing to shine brightly, we have seen overall stable market conditions over the last few days. Moving forward, there will be things that we look for every month, such as unemployment numbers, how national trading, and international trading, is taking place. With such a tumultuous time behind us, there will be a domino effect on the markets at multiple points.

Suggested Reading: Copper Hits $4.00 & Reaching For All-Time Highs

What does this mean? Well, with cases still out there and potential shipping interruptions taking place across the world, as there is a container crunch going on right now, there could always be different economic factors that boil into copper prices. One thing that we have seen in the past is that when copper prices increase, many of the union mining operations throughout the world have gotten together and head strikes. This will affect the production of new copper and/or scrap prices. Generally, it affects the scrap prices in an upward trend.

???? Aluminum Is Strong

Aluminum has remained strong with some prices creeping up for sheet aluminum, upwards of $0.50 per pound. We have had a lot of questions recently about aluminum extrusion and we’re going to try to answer as many of those as possible on our upcoming aluminum podcasts.

Reported Non-Ferrous Scrap Prices (03/10 – 03/16):




Sioux City, IA Brass $1.88 / lb
Rockaway, NJ #1 Bare Bright Copper Wire $3.50 / lb
Niles, OH Aluminum Cans $0.50 / lb
San Marcos, TX Compressor $0.14 / lb
Hesperia, CA #1 Copper Tubing  $2.70 / lb
Dodge City, KS Aluminum #3 $0.15 / lb
West Plains, MO #2 Copper Tubing $2.50 / lb
Coatesville, PA Aluminum Copper Radiators $1.60 / lb
Seattle, WA Stainless Steel $0.32/ lb
Burlington, NC Clean Lead $0.35 / lb
Athens, GA Red Brass $1.90 / lb
Chattanooga, TN Low Grade Insulated Wire $0.64 / lb

Ferrous Market News

???? Demand For Steel?

Oil and gas prices will go on to affect steel markets as they continue to climb week after week. Out of all of the different metals that we talk about, iron and steel are generally most heavily impacted by gas prices. One thing that will offset some of the increases will be oversupply, not only from scrap recyclers but also from iron or mining operations throughout the world.

Moving forward, things that we’re looking for in the news would be a new infrastructure bill. The new administration is talking about a $2-4 trillion infrastructure plan that could produce several reasons for metal prices to remain strong. Not only would there be a large demand of iron and steel to construct road and bridgework, a significant amount of copper is also necessary to begin the new electric vehicle charging stations. The stations would need heavy infrastructure of conduit and more steel would be needed to get the set up in hundreds, if not thousands, of locations.

Reported Ferrous Scrap Prices (03/10- 03/16)

Location Material Price
Sedalia, MO #1 Steel $110.00/ ton
Harrisburg, PA Tin $135.00/ ton
Concord, NH #1 HMS $145.00/ ton
Provo, UT Scrap Iron $130.00/ ton
Tulsa, OK Cast Iron $80.00/ ton
Allegan, MI Shreddable Steel $201.60/ ton
Shreveport, LA #1 Prepared $9.25/ CW
Orlando, FL #2 Unprepared $7.50/ CW
Jackson, MI Light Iron $200.00/ ton
North Bay, Ontario* Tin $240.00/ ton
Streetsboro, OH Shreddable Steel $0.09/ lb

Other Metal Markets

Lithium continues to be one of the more talked about metals, as the electric vehicle operations really have an uptick. One of the biggest problems that we have seen in the industry right now is the lack of lithium battery recycling, and as many people ask more questions, we will continue to populate more podcasts and interview more people that will teach us about these different problems. 

Stainless prices have dropped down about $0.02-$0.04 per pound over the last few days, with the overall nickel market trading lower.

Catalytic Converter Market News



With catalytic converters always a hot topic, we want to thank the team over at for providing us with more updated prices as well as quoting thousands of catalytic converters through serial numbers and different photo grading. 

With rhodium prices being the big catalyst of price changes over the last week, we have started to see these markets recovering. After having record highs of $28,000 or more per ounce, we saw the market drop 25% in a short one-week span. Now we have seen a slight recovery from that 25% dip, but we are waiting for more news on platinum and palladium jumps. 

One thing that we have seen and heard about is how happy so many customers of have been with predictable market rates, steady pricing, and consistent payments. Hundreds of people have sold to, but don’t take our word for it- check out these Google Reviews from actual customers

Scrap Catalytic Converter Prices This Week (03/10-03/16):

Cat Type/Serial Number


EA6 $500/ @
GD3 $850/ @
JSH62 $401/ @
12606389 $397/ @
25130440 $339/ @
Small Foreign $145/ @
Regular Domestic $229/ @


Thank You.

The markets have been nice to scrappers in 2021 and we hope that this trend continues. We know that there are topics that you want us to go over and we are ready to do just that. Let us know so we can discuss them during our podcasts and in our weekly updates.

– Tom

Related Articles:

*Canadian Dollar