Aluminum MMI®: More Advances in Automotive, Replacing Dr. Copper?

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Automotive consumer website Edmunds.com bought a new, $52,000 Ford F-150 from Galpin Ford in Van Nuys, Calif., and then hit it twice with a sledgehammer to see how much it would cost to fix vs. a traditional steel-bodied truck.

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Edmunds’ dealer quoted more labor and repair time and, therefore, a higher repair price but Ford released a statement saying “with the proper tools and training, cosmetic repairs to aluminum body panels will take a similar amount of time as steel panel repairs.”

Automotive aluminum continued to grow this week with the opening of a new 81,000-sf Novelis recycling center in Oswego, NY. Some analysts are opining that, with its new uses, aluminum price is replacing copper as an overall indicator of economic health.

The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Aluminum MMI® was the cash price of primary Indian aluminum, which saw a 2.1% decline to INR 112.90 ($1.84) per kilogram. This comes on the heels of a 4.2% increase the week before. The 3-month price of aluminum rose 1.4% on the LME over the past week to $1,858 per metric ton. On the LME, a 1.0% gain landed the primary aluminum cash price at $1,849 per metric ton.

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Chinese aluminum prices were mixed for the week. The price of Chinese aluminum scrap fell 0.8% to CNY 12,200 ($1,954) per metric ton after rising 3.4% the week before. Following a 1.9% increase in the week prior, the Chinese aluminum cash price fell 0.5% last week to CNY 12,670 ($2,029) per metric ton. The price of Chinese aluminum bar fell 0.5% to CNY 12,680 ($2,030) per metric ton after rising 1.9% the week before.

Prices for Korean 3003 coil premium over 1050 sheet remained constant, closing the week at KRW 4,340 ($4.03) per kilogram. Following a steady week, prices for Korean 5052 coil premium over 1050 sheet closed flat at KRW 4,490 ($4.17) per kilogram. European 5083 plate prices held steady from the previous week at EUR 2,843 ($3,165) per metric ton. Closing at EUR 2,499 ($2,782) per metric ton, European 1050 aluminum remained unchanged for the week.

The Aluminum MMI® collects and weights 12 global aluminum price points to provide a unique view into aluminum price trends. For more information on the Aluminum MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.

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