Global Economic, Commodities, Scrap Metal, and Recycling Report

October 19, 2020

This is the Global Economic, Commodities, Scrap Metal and Recycling Report, by our BENLEE Roll off Trailer and Gondola Trailer, October 19th, 2020.

weekly tonnage of raw steel production

U.S. Weekly crude steel production rose to 1.502 MT the highest in about 7 months as slow U.S. economic growth continues.

Crude Oil

Crude Oil price rose 28 cents to $40.88/b. on a very slow increase in demand and as huge U.S./OPEC production cuts remain in place.

Oil Rig Count

The U.S. weekly Oil rig count rose to 205, a multi month high, but still down 87.3% from the 2014 high. Note rigs mostly declined since late 2018, pre COVID.

US Field Production of Crude Oil

U.S. weekly oil production fell to 10.5 m/b/d, near a 2 year low as demand is increasing very slowly.

Scrap Steel Price

Scrap Steel #1 HMS Export buying price Philly, fell to $220/GT on a good supply and steady demand.

AMM Weekly Heavy Melt

Scrap steel #1 HMS price was mostly steady at $244.33/GT as supply and demand seem pretty balanced.

Hot Roll Coil Steel

Hot Roll Coil steel rose to $33.17/cwt, the highest in about 18 months with short supply and long lead times.


Copper Price fell 2 cents to $3.06/lb., near the multiyear high as slow global growth continues, including good Chinese demand, which represents 50% of global use.


Aluminum price rose 2.1 cents to $.839/lb., about a 14-month high, leaving out spikes, on the same, slow global growth continues.

China GDP (Growth) Q3

China’s GDP, growth in the third quarter grew at 4.9%, well below trend. The global slowdown is hurting China’s export growth. As a reference U.S. GDP crashed 31.7 in the 2nd quarter and is forecast to rise a record 30% or more in q3.

U.S. Industrial Production

September’s U.S. Industrial production fell 7.3% vs. last year, the 13th straight month of decline, year over year. Industrial growth peaked in mid-2018, over 2 years ago, with a blip up in January. The U.S. Decline of our Manufacturing Base is continuing.

U.S. Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims

U.S. Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims rose to 898,000, the highest in about two months, with 373,000 additional people not in this number, due to they are individual contractors, so 1.27M total claims. This is very, very serious. We need to get COVID under control and need more government stimulus.

U.S. Consumer Sentiment

U.S. consumer sentiment increased to 81.2, the highest since April, which is very good news, but the gauge of current conditions declined as there were concerns over increased COVID deaths, job growth slowing and no new Federal Stimulus.

U.S. Retail Sales

September’s Retail sales rose 5.4% vs. last year, the highest since December 2019. This is a great, great, growth number. The $3.3 Trillion dollars of stimulus clearly helped. Note that growth was slowing pre COVID.

Dow Jones

Wall Street’s Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 19 points to 28,606 on strong retail sales, good consumer confidence and on Pfizer said they may apply for emergency use of a COVID vaccine in November. On the downside, Industrial output contracted.


This is a Very, very Important message for owners of Older BENLEE trailers. This week we received a call at about 7:15 AM from the side of a major highway that had just been shut down due to the customer’s trailer had just hit a bridge, because the hoist was up. He needed to order our hoist up strobe light alarms that they had chosen not to buy in the past few years. We have a very low-cost hoist up, flashing strobe retrofit alarm. Please install them. They are non-audible, but flash in the rear the mirror. They reduce injuries and damage to bridges and power lines.

As always, feel free to call, or email me with any questions and we hope all have a safe and profitable week.