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Platts Aluminum Midwest Premium Explained

The Midwest Premium is a term for the price of aluminum supplied to the Midwest United States.

Platts (like its competitors) provides independent assessments of where this price falls each day between buyers and sellers in this regional market.

Myths vs Facts

S&P Global Platts provides an independent assessment of where commodity prices fall each day and has no financial stake in the price going up or down.

Learn About the APEX Act and Why It Isn't Needed >



 

APEX Act proponents (Beer industry) are seeking “government intervention” to lower prices after the US imposed a 10% tariff on aluminum imports in 2018. The Beer industry also seeks to expand CFTC oversight, though the CFTC has not requested more oversight and previously testified to lawmakers that they have “been looking at aluminum for years” and “have not found manipulation in the market.”

Learn More About the APEX Act >

  • Myth: The MWP is a "fee"?
  • Myth: The MWP is “set” by Platts?
  • Myth: The MWP is “opaque”?
  • Myth: The MWP is “artificially inflated”?
  • Myth: The APEX Act is “needed”?

Myth: The Midwest Premium is a “fee” that is charged to buyers and end users of aluminum—intended to account for “transport and storage” costs.

Fact: The “Midwest Premium” is not a "fee" for “storage and transportation”—it is simply a term for the regional price of aluminum in the Midwest United States.

Learn the Truth About the Midwest Premium

Myth: The Midwest Premium is “set” by “only one entity” (Platts).

Fact: Platts does not “set” the Midwest Premium or the price of aluminum - it simply provides (like its competitors) an independent assessment of where the price of aluminum fell between buyers and sellers in the market each day (the use of which is voluntary).

Learn the Truth About the Midwest Premium

Myth: The Midwest Premium is an “opaque pricing system” based on a “black box survey.”

Fact: Platts sheds light on commodity markets by:
- publishing an independent assessment of where prices fell between buyers and sellers each day using a methodology that is published on our website
- reporting all pricing information Platts sees and relies on for market participants to see and validate themselves.

Learn the Truth About the Midwest Premium

Myth: The Midwest Premium is “artificially inflated”.

Fact: S&P Global Platts does not “artificially inflate” the Midwest Premium or the price of aluminum, and has no financial stake in the price of aluminum or any commodity going up or down. Beer industry leaders have made claims of the Midwest Premium being “inflated” even as it reached a multi-year low of 8 cents/lb in May 2020.

Learn the Truth About the Midwest Premium

Myth: The APEX Act is needed “to equip the CFTC” with the authority “to investigate pricing irregularities” and “unfair market practices.”

Fact—the APEX Act is:

Not needed because the CFTC already has the authority to oversee commodities markets, including aluminum, and investigate any "pricing irregularities," including "artificially inflated" prices or manipulation of the market

Built on unsubstantiated claims the CTFC has already refuted - testifying to Congress: "we monitor that very carefully... we have not found manipulation"

An effort by one industry to use political influence to lower the price of aluminum through "government intervention" following increased aluminum costs from tariffs

Potentially disruptive to commodities markets through unrestricted government authority over commodity pricing

Learn the Truth About the Midwest Premium

Midwest Transaction Premium (MWP) Price History

The annotated price history timeline of US Aluminum P1020 Midwest Transaction Premium (MWP) shows the impact of market events and tariffs from January 2018.

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