Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Scrap Prices Bounce Back

There hasn't been much to post about since the prices paid for scrap fell... now scrap prices have bounced back!

Here in Frederick Md aluminum cans have risen from a low of $.35 a pound back up to $.65 a pound

Scrap Recycling Prices

The London Metal Exchange seems to be THE place to gauge the current prices being paid worldwide. Prices listed there reflect the auction price and not local prices.


The London Metal Exchange or LME is the futures exchange with the world's largest market in options, and futures contracts on base and other metals. As the LME offers contracts with daily expiry dates of up to three months from trade date, along with longer-dated contracts, it also allows for cash trading. It offers hedging, worldwide reference pricing, and the option of physical delivery to settle contracts.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Bottom Drops Out of Scrap Metal Industry

In 2008, a recycler in Tulsa, Okla. paid 85 cents per pound for aluminum cans, but the going rate for 2009 has dropped to less than half of that amount. According to Michael Patton, executive director of the Metropolitan Environmental Trust in Tulsa, the decrease is directly related to the economic recession.
Patton says the “bottom has fallen out of the scrap metal industry.” The demand for metal has disappeared due to the decrease in construction, a drastic change from the metal scarcity in Tulsa just two years ago.
Aluminum can prices have dropped to 25 cents per pound in Oklahoma. Photo:
Aluminum can prices have dropped to 25 cents per pound in Oklahoma. Photo:
“This is related to the economy and demand issues in the home construction industry. An amazing amount of aluminum, steel and copper is used in home and commercial building construction,” Patton tells Tulsa World. “But this construction isn’t happening in America.”
Over the past five months, the prices for aluminum have fluctuated. In December, January and February, the price dropped to 15 cents per pound and is now steadying itself at approximately 25 cent per pound.
But Patton says this price “rollercoaster” is not necessarily a bad thing. It helps expand the use of material because entrepreneurs will have to think of news ways to use aluminum cans. On average, a recycled aluminum can is converted back into a usable beverage can in 60 days.
American Recycler is reporting the same sentiment of hope. The news outlet says although there are mixed opinions on the state of the scrap metal market, there are signs of life. Some believe that scrap metal prices have hit the bottom, and are now slowly recovering. However, metal recyclers are still holding tight on operation costs and “holding their breath.”
In addition to the economic recession, severe weather may also have an impact on the compounded shortage reported in many parts of the country. Also creating controversy in the scrap metal industry is the recent “Buy American” provision passed in January. The bill would mostly ban foreign steel and iron from projects laid out by the $819 billion economic package. However, it is still unknown just how the provision will be carried out or what effect it will have on the scrap metal industry.
For the most part, industry heads are confident that the scrap metal industry is on its way to recovery, in spite of its shaky state. Domestic and foreign government bailouts and guarantees will eventually awaken the economy, and consumers will start buying, creating more jobs.
“We are cautiously optimistic that infrastructure spending in the United Sates, in China and other countries will help jumpstart prices and demand for our commodities,” says Bruce Savage, vice president of communications at Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries. “Our theory has always been it’s not a question of if it will rebound, it’s a question of when.”
Source: Earth911

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Current Prices Paid For Scrap Metal - Western Maryland

There hasn't been much to post about in the scrap metal industry. From 2003 to 2008 you could make a decent living scraping metal IF you were entrepreneurial enough and had enough ambition (and had the rapport of a salesman) to get warehouses to give you the stuff... I know because I did it!

Sadly this is no longer the case, the wear and tear on your pick up vs what you get paid is a whole lot less than it used to be.

Virtually NONE of the local Washington DC area/ Western Maryland area scrap metal recycling facilities post current prices on their websites. What you usually see is "call xxx-xxxx for current prices.

... I could only find one:

Most Recent List of Scrap Metal Prices Paid by Hagerstown Maryland's Conservit

Metal Price lbs.
5' & Under P&S $10.00 100
Alum Cans $0.50 1
Alum Condensor $0.40 1
Alum Cu Cond $0.90 1
Alum Siding $0.50 1
Alum Wheels $0.50 1
Bare Bright $2.65 1
Bronze $1.35 1
Bus $8.00 100
Car / Shred $8.00 100
Car Rims $8.50 100
Carbide Tips $0.10 1
Cars $8.00 100
Cast Alum $0.40 1
Catalytic Convertors $4.00 1
Catv Cable (BLK) $0.15 1
Catv Cable (WHT) $0.20 1
Clean Alum $0.40 1
Clean Motors $8.00 100
Copper #1 $2.60 1
Copper #2 $2.45 1
Diesel Radiators, CLN Truck $1.55 1
Dirty Motors (Gasoline) $8.00 100
EC Wire Clean $0.55 1
Electric Motor $0.18 1
Extruded Alum $0.55 1
Farm Machine $7.00 100
Heater Cores $1.30 1
Heavy Break $7.00 100
Irony Alum $0.10 1
Irony Diesel Radiators (Truck) $0.85 1
Lead $0.15 1
Light Copper $2.30 1
Litho Sheet $0.55 1
Mixed Alum $0.40 1
MLC $0.50 1
Old Sheet $0.40 1
Prep#1 $10.00 100
Prep#2 $0.00 100
Radiators $1.55 1
Random Rail $8.00 100
Red Brass $1.75 1
Shredder $8.00 100
Stainless $0.45 1
Truck $8.00 100
Unprep Struct $8.50 100
Unprep#1 $8.50 100
Yardcast $8.00 100
Yellow Brass $1.35 1
Zinc $0.35 1

Thursday, December 31, 2009

How Much Can I Get For My Scrap Metal in Western Maryland?

Scrap Metal Prices Flat Most of 2009

I've not been posting to this blog lately because it's been depressing.
What used to be a lucrative part time entrepreneurial activity is now worth-less than it once was.

For my last post of 2009 I'll post a list of current scrap metal prices being paid around the world, in the US and near Frederick Maryland:

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  • ===

    How Much Can I Get For My Scrap?

    Most scrap metal recycling centers shy away from publishing the current price on their websites, I'm guessing they don't update their own site, preferring to pay a web designer once. (they Should get in touch with me as I can set them up with a blog that allows them to update by simply sending an email, if you can send an email you can blog, but that's another topic/ blog unto itself)

    However, ConservIt in Hagerstown Maryland does publish a price list of current prices paid, and to their credit it's online:

    As of 12/30/2009 ConservIt's prices are as follows:

    Metal Price lbs. 5' & Under P&S $7.50 100lbs
    Alum Cans $0.45 1
    Alum Condensor $0.37 1
    Alum Cu Cond $1.00 1
    Alum Siding $0.45 1
    Alum Wheels $0.45 1
    Bare Bright $2.40 1
    Bronze $1.20 1
    Bus $5.00 100
    Car / Shred $5.50 100
    Car Rims $6.00 100
    Carbide Tips $0.10 1
    Cars $5.50 100
    Cast Alum $0.35 1
    Catalytic Convertors $2.00 1
    Catv Cable (BLK) $0.10 1
    Catv Cable (WHT) $0.15 1
    Clean Alum $0.35 1
    Clean Motors $6.50 100
    Copper #1 $2.30 1
    Copper #2 $2.15 1
    Diesel Radiators, CLN Truck $1.35 1
    Dirty Motors (Gasoline) $5.50 100
    EC Wire Clean $0.50 1
    Electric Motor $0.14 1
    Extruded Alum $0.50 1
    Farm Machine $5.00 100
    Heater Cores $1.10 1
    Heavy Break $5.00 100
    Irony Alum $0.08 1
    Irony Diesel Radiators (Truck) $0.60 1
    Lead $0.05 1
    Light Copper $2.05 1
    Litho Sheet $0.50 1
    Mixed Alum $0.35 1
    MLC $0.45 1
    Old Sheet $0.35 1
    Prep#1 $7.50 100
    Prep#2 $0.00 100
    Radiators $1.35 1
    Random Rail $4.50 100
    Red Brass $1.55 1
    Shredder $5.50 100
    Stainless $0.40 1
    Truck $5.50 100
    Unprep Struct $5.75 100
    Unprep#1 $5.75 100
    Yardcast $5.50 100
    Yellow Brass $1.20 1
    Zinc $0.25 1

    18656 Leslie Drive
    Hagerstown, MD 21740
    (301) 416-7395

    Sunday, August 30, 2009

    Your Trash is My Cash says Fairbanks Alaska Man

    "I even have my own missile," he said.

    "Everyone should have their own missile."

    Over the years, Karl has built a mini-kingdom from other people's unwanted items. His motto: "Your trash is my cash." At his K&K Recycling 10-acre facility yard in North Pole, he stores such items as pipe and pipeline camps, as well as aging aircraft and steel beams.

    "I even have my own missile," he said. "Everyone should have their own missile."

    Years ago, Karl was hired to clean up a government Nike site, an anti-aircraft missile system used between World War II and the Cold War eras. The Army left behind a missile in the launch silo. Contracted to take everything out, Karl ended up with the memento.

    He finds some interesting uses for many of his long-stored items. Insulated pipe previously used on North Slope oilfields was recycled to move hot water to turbines to power the facilities at his Chena Hot Springs Resort.

    Chena Hot Springs is a world-class resort, but the 450-acre lot also is a proving ground for Karl's numerous and varied experiments. Karl has pioneered the use of geothermal energy at the Chena resort, located 56 miles east of Fairbanks.

    Fairbanks' Bernie Karl eyes new renewable energy sources

    Published Saturday, August 29, 2009

    My Dad was assigned to one of the first Nike Missile batteries, that's how he met my Mom (and I wouldn't be here if not for this little fact)

    The first 24 Nike anti-aircraft missile batteries were deployed in a ring around Washington D.C., my Dad was in the 16th Battalion. Dad said the Army wouldn't let them deploy until they had successfully shot down a radio controlled WW2 B-17 drone (it took them 2 years of practice to shoot one down, that's how new the technology was in the mid 1950's)

    From Wikipedia:
    When it became apparent that the greatest threat to US National defense was from missiles instead of bombers, most Nike-Hercules units were deactivated. All CONUS Nike-Hercules batteries, with the exception of the ones in Florida and Alaska, were deactivated by April 1974. The remaining units were deactivated during the spring of 1979. Dismantling of the sites in Florida - Alpha Battery in Everglades National Park, Bravo Battery in Key Largo, Charlie Battery in Carol City and Delta Battery, located on Krome Avenue on the outskirts of Miami - started in June 1979 and was completed by early fall of that year. The buildings that once housed Delta Battery became the original structures used for the Krome Avenue Detention Facility, a federal facility used primarily to hold illegal immigrants awaiting immigration hearings. In Alaska, Site Point was converted into a ski chalet for Kincaid Park.
    The US Army continued to use Nike-Hercules as a front-line air defense weapon in Europe until 1983, when Patriot missile batteries were deployed. NATO units from West Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Greece and Turkey continued to use the Nike-Hercules for high-altitude air defense until the late 1980s. With the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe, the units were deactivated.

    Sunday, August 02, 2009

    Church Hit 2X by Copper Theives

    Atlanta Georgia, the NBC channel 11 reports that Theives have hit the same church twice robbing it of copper in the building's heating and air conditioning system.

    ATLANTA -- At Trinity AME Church in Southwest Atlanta, Rev. Dr. Jeffery Cooper is tired of being tested.

    "I think this is the lowest theft you can do to steal anything from the House of God," Rev. Cooper said.

    For the second time in two weeks, thieves stole copper from the air conditioning units that keep the church daycare center cool.

    "They pried them open, shut the power down and dismantled each unit for the copper," Rev. Cooper said.

    The latest hit happened late Friday night at the church on Lynhurst Drive. Five brand new a/c units were destroyed.

    After getting hit the first time, the church beefed up security with double, even triple locks, but the thieves found a different way to get in, get what they wanted and get away.

    "The money they'll get for the copper is nowhere near the cost of having to replace these units," Rev. Cooper said.

    Sunday's service included a special offering since the church will have to replace the a/c units at a cost of about $10,000.

    And there's no time to waste.

    It's too hot, and too many families rely on the church for child care.

    "Once again, we're under attack," Rev. Cooper said.

    Rev. Cooper wants to warn other churches about what happened, and he's hoping someone will help police find the thieves responsible.

    "No person who takes from God is going to be able to gain in the process," Rev. Cooper said.

    As many as 100 children attend Trinity Daycare Center.

    They'll be moved to a different part of the church campus until the a/c units can be replaced.

    Thursday, May 14, 2009

    Demand for Scrap Evaporated, slowly inching upwards

    Drop In Chinese Demand Melts Scrap Metal Market

    November 13, 2008 · Just months ago, scrap metal was in such high demand that thieves around the world were pulling up manhole covers, fire hydrants and even monuments to the dead to sell them. Driven by China's insatiable appetite, prices for scrap metal had skyrocketed. But now, the scrap metal industry has been hit hard by the global financial crisis — and scrap yards themselves could be facing the scrap heap.

    Scrap Metal being sold to India: then... not now

    The Indian metal industry is growing at a pace as fast as India’s industrial economy, offering one of the steepest returns in the Asia-Pacific region. The metal scrap recycling industry in India, is also growing at a rapid pace. As there is less domestic scrap generated then demand, India imports about half of the 1.2 million metric tons of scrap metal consumed annually in the country.

    The United States is a major exporter of ferrous and non-ferrous scrap into India. According to the U.S. Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc. (ISRI), the U.S. based scrap industry is a significant exporter of high quality scrap commodities to industrial consumers worldwide. Asia, and India in particular, is one of the fastest growing markets in the world for scrap metal. In 2005 (the latest year for which data is available), U.S. scrap exporters shipped more than $350 million of scrap commodities to India, including approximately $250 million of ferrous and nonferrous scrap. (see Market Demand below)

    Though the opportunities in the Indian scrap sector are large, the industry is unorganized. Thus, U.S. companies are encouraged to be careful in all of their deals. Many Indian scrap importers are small and it is important for U.S. exporters to check the credentials of an Indian company. ISRI’s specifications should be used at all times to eliminate any possible discrepancies. To avoid disputes, U.S. exporters must insist on inspections before shipping the products. In addition, U.S. exporters must adhere to the Indian government regulations related to scrap metal exports including registration with India’s Director General of Foreign Trade. Disputes can be reduced by adhering to the critical aspects of procedures for exporting cargo (see Market Entry) of scrap containers to India.

    From Dumpster Diving 4 Instant Cash
    Prices paid for scrap aluminum cans here in Frederick Maryland up a nickle, from low of $.25 lb to $.30 lb.

    Reader Input

    A reader writes this:

    Am I missing something? I have a medium sized range, three clothes washers,  a pellet stove (heavy sucker) and a couple commercial electric service  panels, and a five drawer lateral file cabinet. 
    (I'm trying to make space in my evidence storage locker) 
    If I am willing to give myself a hernia and  then re injure it 5 times loading this stuff on a truck, and I drive it 30  miles to a scrap dealer and he buys it, I could make back half of my truck  rental expense???? 
    What is wrong with this picture? Why would you be in  this business, and is it true that the red Chinese are buying our scrap the same way our other friends did in the 1940's? 
    Thanks in advance for sharing  your insight.

    My response:

    ... yup, the days of profitably scraping light weight metals such as tin, junk appliances seem to be gone at least for the next year. When I did it full time back in 2004, 2005 prices were at a 6 year high according to the scrap dealers who were paying me.

    I guess we'll have to wait for the economic recovery... which will come (unless the democrats screw things up by being too greedy with their income redistribution/ social engineering experiment). You know... demand rises constantly, it may be pent up demand but when the credit markets/ housing markets/ financial markets settle down and who ever has to take their well deserved lumps takes them... we will be back with a vengance.

    Pent Up Demand
    That's what got us out of the last depression.