Printed circuit board scrap value spikes

Printed circuit board scrap value spikes

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

The average price for printed circuit boards is back over $8 per pound for the first time since February.

Thanks to across-the-board jumps in precious metal prices, the average price of circuit board scrap rose to $8.12 per pound in September — an increase of 7.9 percent from the August average and 4.4 percent since the first of the year.

The September average price is still down 2.3 percent from September 2011. However, the year-to-date average price of $7.71 per pound is essentially on par with the year-earlier average — representing a 0.8 percent increase compared to the same nine-month period in 2011.

This data represents the full metallic values of boards over time and are not the recycling values, as those values do not include the costs involved in actually extracting metal from boards, including freight, sampling charges, assay assessments, smelting, refining, process loss, return on investment, and penalties for various elements, including beryllium, bismuth and nickel.

These values are for the estimated intrinsic metal content of recovered PC boards. Some consumers label such material as mid-value. Lower-value scrap includes monitor and television boards. Higher-value scrap includes network and video cards, and motherboards.

PWB chart

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