The market for OCC and mixed paper was unstable during the second quarter of 2023 and yet there was an increase in prices of the former. Mixed paper saw lower demand but at stable levels. Despite this gain for OCC, predicting the direction of the market during the third quarter is rather challenging owing to the economic landscape of rising interest rates and inflation effects.
During the second quarter, several mills were proactive in stocking up on OCC in anticipation of a decrease in collection volumes which is still evident across various grades. High stock levels can be seen at many of those mills in Europe implementing production stoppages.
There has been a continued decline in demand for the entire range of graphic paper, resulting in production stops and thinner order books for many mills towards the end of the quarter. Newsprint collection volumes have shown a decrease while demand among tissue mills in Northern Europe has been variable. Demand from the insulation sector has settled at lower levels.
Regarding logistics, there were no significant changes in the second quarter when compared to the first three months of the year. Transportation prices remain high but an improvement has been noticed in truck availability.