SHANGHAI, Jun. 12 (SMM) – The share of scrap copper used by Chinese copper wire rod makers was 0.3% in May, down slightly from April, SMM’s survey of 20 enterprises shows.
The price spread between scrap and refined copper widened to an average of 1,596 yuan per tonne in May, up 221 yuan a tonne from April’s average. However, limited supply of scrap copper and tougher environmental protection inspections in some regions forced copper wire rod producers to lower scrap copper consumption.
The ratio of all raw materials at the surveyed producers, however, rose in May by 1.7 percentage points to 16.2%. Although copper premiums in China held elevated and physical copper prices were around 50,000 yuan per tonne, copper wire rod makers that run down stocks to low levels still rebuilt stocks when copper prices were relatively low, so as to avoid any raw material shortages in the future.