Dec 2, 2015

Posted by in Metal | Comments Off on What determines the price of scrap metal?

What determines the price of scrap metal?

What determines the price of scrap metal?

People who are involved in the scrap metal industry, either as buyers or sellers, must be constantly aware of the price of scrap metal. The prices vacillate, going up and going down, often changing from one day to the next. There are numerous factors that enter into the pricing matrix.

Metal type:

There are many different types of metal and even at that, there are numerous sub categories. To the uninitiated copper is copper and that’s it. That is not it, there are categories such as bare bright, copper 1, copper 2, etc; each of these variants are priced differently.


As a seller, the more you have the better price you can negotiate. As a buyer the opposite is true, buying in bulk will result in a reduction of the price per pound that you will pay. People who collect scrap, these people are called “scrappers” in the industry do not take their daily haul directly to the scrap yard, they know that if they accumulate it they can negotiate a better price.

Supply and demand:

Like every commodity, the price of scrap metal is impacted by supply and demand. The economy actually plays a larger role than it might appear. When the economy is poor; local, state and the federal government often undertake more public works projects. Many of these projects require steel, and lots of it; this will drive the price per pound of scrap steel up due to demand. On the other hand, when car sales for example are down, the demand for steel strip is also down, the result is the price for scrap steel goes down.


Location counts, the price of scrap metal will be higher in areas where there is significant demand as well as active competition. It is always a good idea to check the scrap prices in various locales; it may be well worth hauling it a few extra miles to pick up a few extra cents per pound.

Spot prices of scrap:

Scrap metal prices change all the time, the wise seller will always keep abreast of the current prices. There are numerous sources for this information, many of which are on the internet. Always make sure you buy low and sell high, the golden rule of business.

Scrap yards take all these factors into account when they set the scale price at their yard, if you are a buyer or a seller it is up to you to stay involved and stay sharp.

The price of scrap metal goes up and down. If you live in or around Newark NJ you are invited to take your scrap to H&C Metals, Inc where you can expect to find the best prices for scrap in the area.

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