Detroit Car Companies Still Posting Gains, But Auto Metals Index Drops

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automotive metal price index

The monthly Automotive MMI® registered a value of 101 in April, a decrease of 1.9 percent from 103 in March.

Monthly automotive data continues to look positive with Detroit’s Big 3 posting 5-6 percent sales gains for the month of March, according to Automotive News.

“Though much of the automotive news appears healthy, and analysts have raised sales forecasts, we believe the decline in base metal prices, steel price weakness (despite rising scrap prices), the European financial crisis and lackluster consumer confidence don’t bode well for the long term,” said Lisa Reisman, managing editor of MetalMiner. “In other words, has the steam come out of the economic engine? Or do we just have a more pessimistic point of view?”

Reisman continued: “Despite the positive sales figures, the MetalMiner Automotive MMI® dropped two points to 101, primarily on the back of falling base metal prices – copper and lead in particular. We actually believe the peak of the automotive market in general may have already passed, as the automotive price index hit a high of 104 in December-January.”

Current Price Drivers for Auto Metals Index

A 3.2 percent decline for the 3-month price of copper on the LME left it at $7,613 per metric ton. After falling 3.2 percent, the primary copper cash price finished the month on the LME at $7,582 per metric ton. The Chinese lead price saw a small decline this month, falling 2.7 percent.

today's metal prices - MetalMiner IndXThe value of US platinum bar weakened by 0.9 percent this month. US HDG steel prices decreased by 0.7 percent this month.

Meanwhile, the price of US palladium bar climbed 6.1 percent.

Prices for Korean 5052 coil premium over 1050 sheet remained constant this past month, holding pat.

The Automotive MMI® collects and weights 7 metal price points used in automotive production to provide a unique view into automotive metal trends over a 30-day period. For more information on the Automotive MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.