Resin pricing summary, March 2009: Faint signs of improving demand?

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April 20, 2009

Brought to you by The Plastics Exchange and Polymerupdate.com

Resin pricing trends around the globe offered no clear evidence that demand was improving. But within the broader picture, there were a few signs of promise, according to plastics pricing specialists The Plastics Exchange (Chicago) and Polymerupdate.com (Mumbai, India). One evident trend: globally, demand for LDPE and LLDPE—material typically processed into packaging films-remained stable or even improved.

Last month, polyethylene (PE) prices were stable with active spot trading, according to spot-trading platform The Plastics Exchange (TPE) and its reporting partner, The PetroChem Wire. Buyers sought out material since spot resin was priced below proposed contract prices for March. Poor demand pushed players throughout the resin supply chain to keep inventories low. The weakening Mexican peso has hurt that country’s demand for U.S. resin. Polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS) prices softened due to poor demand, reported TPE.

In much of Asia, recent price trends for LDPE, LLDPE and HDPE stayed stable, according to the experts at plastics pricing service Polymerupdate.com, while prices for styrenics and polypropylene actually rose a bit. LDPE prices in some parts of the region drifted lower on the back of lackluster regional trade activity, but most sellers were seen defending their offers, citing steady to firm upstream prices of ethylene. LLDPE prices ended mostly steady in Asia. Buying was flat from Asia’s key markets of China and India.

In Europe, there were mixed signals of processor demand, with PP prices stable and LDPE and LLDPE contract prices being pushed higher, but soft demand pulled down prices for PS, ABS and PVC, reports Polymerupdate. There was no real buying lift seen in PP. [email protected]

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