Metal Refiners See a Brighter Future Ahead

November 6, 2012

Scrap MetalPhoto by: John Louis |

by Alex Francis
As the United States’ economy has started its journey down the long road to recovery, so too have the automotive and construction industries begun to see things turn around. And while U.S. precious metal refining facilities have been sustained by strong demands for metal in the growing economies of the industrializing nations of India, Brazil, and China, they are “cautiously optimistic” that market conditions for recycled metals will begin improving in the United States as well. While circumstances vary from state to state and company to company, the overall trend seems to be a positive one.
Competition Rises among Scrap Metal Recyclers
Metal recycling’s relation to well-being of the automotive and construction industries stems from the idea that as people buy new cars and build new homes, their old ones will be scrapped and demolished, feeding new materials into scrap yards to be recycled. And as two out of every three tons of new steel is made from recycled, old steel, both the destructive and constructive sides of the coin are important to the recycling industry. As Nancy Gravatt, vice president of communications for the American Iron and Steel Institute sees it, “We are now in a challenging period. We were forecasting perhaps a six percent increase in iron and steel shipments this year, which would suggest some increased demand.”
As scrap metal recyclers fight to move their businesses forward through this economy, they have also begun to cater not only to those looking to buy recycled materials from them, but also to focus on attracting those who have scrap to recycle. Rich Brady, executive vice president of OmniSource Corporation, explained that the competitive nature of the industry “has forced us to be really competitive on the buy side and look very hard at our processes to make sure we are buying material on a competitive basis, processing it efficiently and taking it to market in an aggressive fashion.” It is no longer enough to passively wait for scrap to turn up and wait for it to be bought again.
Challenges Facing the Scrap Metal Recycling Industry
The governmental regulations regarding scrap metal recycling in different states, though, pose a challenge to metal recyclers. Those that operate in numerous states have issues with the lack of consistency and clarity among operational rules at the local, state, and regional levels. And while such discrepancies can be tedious to deal with, they are most easily dealt with by taking the extra steps to adhere to the highest standards in order to ensure that compliance is not an issue.
Another significant setback that the metal industry is facing comes from the rising cost of fuel. All companies rely heavily on transportation, and the scrap business is particularly freight-sensitive. Greg Brown, president and CEO of Raleigh Metal Recycling, Goldsboro Metal Recycling, and Benlee Rolloff Trailers in North Carolina, explained that to deal with the higher prices, his drivers have installed GPS devices and optimized their routes. He remarked that he is “cautiously optimistic, but business is under enormous pressure.”
If you have old and unwanted precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum, and palladium, now would be a great time to take advantage of the competitive prices being offered by the scrap metal recycling industry. CJ Environmental refines and recycles scrap in accordance with EPA standards and covers the cost of shipping for you. Contact CJ Environmental today to see just how much you can get for your unwanted metals.