Recycling Market Snapshot: Second Quarter 2014


The recycling industry continues to grow across the globe and  has exploded here in our home state of South Carolina. A recent report found that the industry has an annual total economic impact of $13 billion in South Carolina, more than double the impact of just eight years ago.

The report – 2014 Recycling Industry Economic Impact Study – was commissioned through the South Carolina Department of Commerce, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, New Carolina and RecyclonomicsSC. The study also found that 22,403 jobs in this state are directly attributable to the recycling industry.

It’s an exciting time to be in the world of recycling and we thank all of our clients, vendors, friends and associates for continuing to grow the industry.

The recycling market underwent a largely disappointing second quarter with metal prices mostly slipping while paperboard fared only slightly better.

The ferrous metal market displayed strength at the start of the quarter in April (jumping up $5-$10 per gross ton) before losing ground over the next two months. No. 1 HMS pricing fell around $10 in both May and June.

June’s tags were the lowest to date in 2014 for all major categories of scrap ferrous material.

Aluminum scrap fared far better over the past three months. Major categories like Mixed Low Copper Clips and Old Sheet held relatively steady with regards to pricing throughout the quarter, losing a penny here and gaining a penny there, but settling in the same narrow band.

Copper scrap was slightly more volatile. Though some grades like yellow brass have displayed pricing stability, other grades like Bare Bright have witnessed more drastic swings.

No. 1 Bare Bright jumped almost $0.10 per pound between the middle of March and the start of April, held steady for about five weeks and then jumped up an additional $0.13 in the middle of May. Price erosion erased those gains quickly before another uptick in late June.

Pricing for paper waste has been trending downward over the past three months.

OCC (old corrugated containers) prices in the Southeast dropped $15 per ton in April before another decrease of $5 in May. Pricing held steady in June. Pricing trends for OCC was similar in all other domestic regions.

SOP (sorted office paper) has enjoyed relative stability. Pricing for April-June has remained unchanged.


Disclaimer – Prices and market related information shown has been obtained by many sources across many commodity markets.  InStream has not verified the information beyond our sources. Information is based on assumptions and projections based on current market drivers. This information is provided as a service and InStream is not recommending action based on the market information provided and is not responsible for the direction of markets and/or results based on the data provided.


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