Recycling prices and market commentary: 11 October 2019

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A bale of plastic for recycling

Materials recycling prices fell this week across many grades, with no price rises seen on anything. Many materials were stable though.

With the plastic PRN/PERN price falling, this helped to ease the price of packaging grades. Although not all of them responded at the same rate as the PRN/PERN price.

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OCC and mixed paper both saw falling values, but metal grades saw no change.

While the pound remained weak against both the dollar and euro for most of the week, breaking news yesterday evening that there might be a ‘deal Brexit’ helped the pound to strengthen.

At the time of writing, the pound was trading at $1.25 compared to $1.23 a week ago, and €1.13 from €1.11 a week ago. The effect of this of course, is to make UK material more expensive.

Recycled plastics

With the PRN/PERN price falling by £40, this had the effect of reducing the price of the physical packaging material. However, with demand still strong, it didn’t necessarily see price falls at the same rate.

PET bottles dropped by the same rate as demand couldn’t hold the price up. But superb demand for HDPE bottles saw these drop by just £20 with UK and European buyers still very keen to get hold of the material.

Excellent demand for film also helped to mitigate the effect of the PRN/PERN price fall, taking £30 off the price of 98/2.

With yesterday’s initial monthly figures on the National Packaging Waste Database showing that the rolling last three months have been generally positive, there is now some hope that compliance could be met for this calendar year. This is what was behind the PRN/PERN price fall.

Forecast prices

1-week4-week
PET357-363363-369
HDPE673-679671-677
LDPE 98/2545-551547-553

Recycled paper

Demand for OCC and mixed paper appeared to be getting weaker over the last few days.

At least one UK mill appears to be full until Christmas, while another was offering prices so low, that it could only suggest they had no interest in buying (offering £30 below the market price for OCC and £20 below the price for mixed).

Chinese buyers are easing out of the market ahead of the last week of shipping to meet 2019 quota. Expect them to withdraw from next week for a few weeks at least until they have some certainty around 2020 quota.

Other destinations were not interested enough to fill any of the gaps left by the inaction of others.

As a result of this, prices for both OCC and mixed dropped a touch.

Forecast prices

1-week4-week
OCC50-5449-53
ONP70-7468-72
Mixed22-2622-26

Recycled metals

Metal markets are normally volatile, but this week was a calm one when no price changes were seen.

Recycling prices

For recycled paper prices, click here

For recycled plastic prices, click here

For recycled metal prices, click here

For recycled glass prices, click here

For PRN/PERN prices, click here

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