At lot has changed since the 70's. But there was one reason why CMC lost money before they changed the system. With the yards being responsible for their own profits, the old style managers did hide stock from the main office, ferrous or non-ferrous. Bailouts when trading went short and the yards came up with "sudden" material. And trading getting stung when the market went in the other direction. Rabin changed that.
At that time Dallas ran a pretty lean office. Don't think I could point out a singe "non-productive". Or maybe I could point to one department head, who had hoped to replace Charlie, but didn't.
It's not the first time this is happening. The length of the line of pick-ups at American Iron is a good indication if the price is too low. But it is still a question of supply and demand. There is always money to be made in the scrap trade.