Global Economic, Commodities, Scrap Metal, and Recycling Report

December 21, 2020

This is the Global Economic, Commodities, Scrap Metal and Recycling Report, by our BENLEE Roll off Trailer and Gondola Trailer, December 21st, 2020.

weekly tonnage of raw steel production

U.S. Weekly crude steel production fell to 1.567MT, but remains near a multi month high on slow U.S. growth and steel mill shutdowns.

Crude Oil

Crude oil price rose to $49.07/b, a multi-month high on growth in global demand, but prices are still low on a good supply, despite the #1 in oil reserves country, Venezuela, still off the market.

Oil Rig Count

The U.S. weekly Oil rig count rose to 346, a multi month high, but still down a huge 78% from the 2014 high, on a slow increase in U.S. demand and higher prices.

US Field Production of Crude Oil

U.S. weekly crude oil production fell to 11.0M/b/d and remains off the record of 10 months ago on relatively low prices and a slow growth in demand.

Scrap Steel Price

Scrap Steel #1 HMS Export buying price Philly rose to $300/GT, a multiyear high on strong export demand, mostly due to a weak U.S. dollar.

AMM Weekly Heavy Melt

Scrap steel #1 HMS settled at $316.67/GT, near a 2 year high on a weak U.S. dollar, bringing high export demand. Markets expect more price increases in January.

Hot Roll Coil Steel

Hot roll coil steel rose to $49.56/cwt, a multiyear high on increased demand, weak supply and higher scrap and iron ore prices.


Copper price rose to $3.46/lb., near an 8 year high on Positive vaccine and U.S. Stimulus news and a weak dollar. High copper prices are an outstanding positive global economic indicator.


Aluminum price rose to 92.5 cents/lb. near a 2 year high on the same dynamics as copper.

U.S. Weekly Initial Jobless Claims

U.S. weekly initial jobless claims rose to 885K and 455K for self-employed, so 1.34M total. Record daily COVID deaths and record hospitalizations are causing new shutdowns and layoffs. Under 300K is good.

U.S. Dollar Indexr

The U.S. dollar index vs. foreign currencies fell to 89.9, near a 3-year low, on new U.S. stimulus adding to huge deficits that hurts the U.S. dollar. The low U.S. dollar gives more buying power to other countries to buy from the U.S.

U.S. Federal Reserve Interest Rates

The U.S. Federal reserve had a meeting and made announcements that they are committed to low interest rates through at least 2023. They will continue $120B a month of asset buying that pumps the economy. They also raised their U.S. GDP, growth economic forecast, to be -2.4 in 2020, Plus 4.2 in 2021 and plus 3.2 in 2022.

U.S. 30 Year Home Mortgage Rate

U.S. 30 Year mortgage rates fell to a new all-time low of 2.67%. Refinance if you can. Low rates are due the slow U.S. economy and lack of borrowing. This spurs home construction and is great for the overall economy.

U.S. Home Building Permitsr

November’s U.S. home building permits soared 6.2% to 1.639M annualized a 14+ year high on low interest rates and people moving out of cities. Increased home building is great for the economy.

Dow Jones

Wall Street’s Dow Jones Industrial average rose 133 points to 30,179, near the all-time high, on vaccine implementation and U.S. stimulus. Record deaths and hospitalizations will slow the economy in Q1 2021 and a new COVID strain in the UK a concern.


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As always, feel free to call, or email me with any questions and we hope all stay safe in these very difficult next 6 months.


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