PC board index down again in July
By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling
The average value of metals commonly found in scrap circuit boards declined again in July.
The scrap circuit board index, which measures the value of commodity metals proportionally weighted to their share in a pound of scrap circuit boards, declined 3.2 percent from June to July, settling at $6.36 per pound. The index has declined every month in 2013, losing 20.3 percent of its value since the start of the year. Adjusted for inflation, the last time the average price of metals in scrap circuit boards approximated the current value was September 2010.
Rapidly declining precious metal prices are largely the cause of the lower price of the index. With the global economy recovering, previously high precious metal prices are receding to normal levels as capital re-enters other markets.
The scrap circuit board index 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 motherboards as well as network and video cards.