Despite Strong Prices, HOLD Catalytic Converters – 12/15/21


Merry Christmas to All and All a Scrappy Night!

We hope that you are getting ready for Santa’s sleigh, and we are going to be looking at a red copper Christmas this year. As we mentioned two weeks ago, we expected to see more red price drops, and here we are with the copper prices down about $0.20 over the last two weeks. This should not come as a surprise with metal traders, suppliers, manufacturers, and others shutting or slowing down going into the holiday season.

With markets a little tired (busy year of trading and upward trends), we see profits taken off the table, and markets are starting to reestablish base/floor pricing numbers. These crazy price swings this year have been stomach-wrenching, to say the least, but we have seen some substantial numbers, and with the inflationary period being here to stay, we do expect these prices to stay at much higher levels in 2022. 

Non-Ferrous Prices & Market Status

  • Copper – HOLD 

  • Aluminum –  SELL

  • Brass –  SELL

  • Copper Wire –  SELL

  • Stainless Steel –  SELL

Since August, with copper prices dropping to their lowest levels, we have seen a selloff (not shocking) going on. With the FED talking about changing their interest rates and the end of the year being upon us, we expected market movements. These may be starting to level off where we saw the markets headed into 2022 and may still see a further drop coming before finding a floor to level off at.

Two weeks ago, we talked about unloading your copper, and while you may not have been able to, the prices are still very high compared to previous years’ pre-holiday rush.

Non-Ferrous Price Chart of the Week


Ferrous Prices & Market Status

  • #1 Steel – SELL

  • Shreddable Steel – SELL

  • Light Iron – SELL

  • Cast Iron – SELL

  • Complete Car – SELL

Steel prices have seen a decline after the quick run-up in October and November. While prices have decreased, we still are firm believers in unloading while you can to eliminate double touching of products. The holidays will be a time for a lot of new residential scrap with old toys/items coated for newer things that the big man in red may be bringing. 

Ferrous Price Chart of the Week

Other Metal Markets

Stainless prices have continued to climb, with the markets reaching 2021 highs. We are happy to see these upticks in the market. Going into 2022, as the aerospace industry continues to recover, we expect to see the price of stainless and other nickel products. 

On the other hand, Lead-Acid-based batteries have continued to be in decline, with the market drying up on the scrap side of things. We have seen prices continue to tick lower all year, and they seem to be trending downward going into 2022 as well. 

Catalytic Converter Prices & Market Status

  • Catalytic Converters – HOLD 

Talk about market movers…we have seen Palladium prices dipping from a November 17th high of $2136 per ounce down to $1550 per ounce today for a drop of over 28%. On top of that, we have seen Platinum go from a November 15th high of $1062 down to $885 per ounce today for a drop of 16%. 

These price declines, while large, are not shocking to us as we have said that this market was very crowded with the material. We expect to see the first quarter of next year rebound, but it may take at least a month to do so. 

Thank You.

We wish you a very Merry Christmas and a continued holiday season. If you are looking for a thoughtful gift…you can always donate to our favorite charity- St. Jude Children’s Hospital. 

– Tom


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