The lead price slipped back in December after getting ahead of fundamentals last month. Corrections took the LME price down to $2168/t from a $2377/t peak but still above pre-November rally levels. Fundamentals should start to reassert themselves after the holiday period to arrest further falls and send prices higher. Primary supply shortages have pushed spot TCs down to historic lows of sub-$20/t CIF MCP flat as Chinese smelters are failed by domestic mine output. Scrap availability in Europe remains normal for the season but North America is enjoying a plentiful supply due to weather combinations reducing demand but increasing the supply of failed batteries, but scrap prices stubbornly refuse to relent.