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Polymerupdate global resin pricing: Price drops, some triple digit, continue

Resin buyers in Asia are sitting on ever-dwindling inventories, anticipating even bigger price drops, according to Polymerupdate. Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) fell to $1400/tonne CFR Far East and South East Asia before dropping further on lower crude, naphtha, and ethylene feedstock to $1355/tonne CFR. Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) rates were also down $50/tonne from the previous week, with general-purpose LDPE assessed at from $1500 to $1510/tonne CFR.

October 24, 2008

3 Min Read
Polymerupdate global resin pricing: Price drops, some triple digit, continue

Polypropylene (PP) prices continued to fall, with PP injection and raffia offers down to $1180/tonne CFR China. In South Asia, PP offers are currently below $1300/tonne CFR, with offers for PP injection seen at $1250/tonne CFR. A Chinese PP buyer told Polymerupdate that with propylene quoting at $860/tonne CFR China, and margins even for non-integrated PP makers at $150/tonne, PP should be priced no higher than $1010/tonne CFR China.

Polymerupdate reports that buying interest in China for imported PVC remains at a “virtual standstill”, leaving sellers of PVC with little choice but to drop offer prices, pushing PVC down to $900/tonne CFR. Prices since July have fallen more than $400/tonne, with a drop of over $200/tonne since September.

CFR prices of general-purpose polystyrene (PS) in China and South East Asia were seen as low as $1400/tonne, with CFR prices of high-impact PS down to $1530/tonne. Polymerupdate reports that in spite of a prices drop over $80/tonne, buying interest still lagged.

Spot prices of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) fell more than $100/tonne in a single week, with prices down to the $1825/tonne CFR China mark. Falling exports of ABS-heavy toys and consumer electronics, as well as falling crude prices, accelerated the drop.

In European news, contract LDPE prices fell to euro 1370/tonne FD North West Europe, with spot LDPE prices as low as euro 1200/tonne FD North West Europe. In related plant news, LyondellBasell is reportedly planning to cut output rates at two of its PE units at Wesseling and Aubette by around 10%. The site at Wesseling produces both HDPE and LDPE grades, with a total production capacity of 1.3 million tonnes/yr. The PE plant at Aubette has LDPE capacity of 320,000 tonnes/yr.

European LLDPE contract prices were also down, with butene-grade contract prices at euro 1395/tonne FD North West Europe and buyers pushing for further reductions. Polymerupdate says sellers far outnumber buyers, creating pressure on spot LLDPE prices, with LLDPE seen in the spot markets at euro 1250/tonne FD North West Europe.

Contract prices of injection-grade PP homopolymer and PP copolymer saw prices at euro 1270/tonne FD North West Europe, down from euro 1305/tonne FD in the week before. PP copolymer prices were assessed at euro 1325/tonne FD, down from euro 1360/tonne FD in the week before. In related plant news, SABIC has scheduled a turnaround at its 360,000 tonnes/yr PP plant located in Geleen, The Netherlands, with the outage due to start in the last week of October and run through the second week of November.

PVC contract prices were flat in Europe at euro1110 to euro 1115/tonne FD North West Europe, with sellers under intense pressure to sharply reduce October contract rates. In spot markets, PVC prices fell to euro 800 to euro 820/tonne FD North West Europe.

PS prices finished sharply lower, as contract prices fell by euro 50/tonne. GPPS contract prices settled at euro 1475/tonne FD North West Europe, while HIPS contract prices finished at euro 1530/tonne FD North West Europe. FD North West Europe prices of spot GPPS fell to euro 1260/tonne, while HIPS prices dropped to euro 1320/tonne FD North West Europe.

Contract prices of general purpose and natural grade ABS were flat at euro 1900/tonne FD north West Europe, in spite of producer efforts to hike October contracts by euro 20/tonne. In the spot market, ABS prices were seen at euro 1585/tonne FD north West Europe.

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) prices in Europe also slumped, with bottle-grade resin at euro 1265/tonne FD North West Europe. In the film-grade markets, PET prices fell to euro 1230/tonne FD North West Europe. In the spot markets, bottle-grade PET fell to euro 1000 to euro 1050/tonne FD North West Europe. 

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