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Just a month ago, the resin market was essentially in free fall. That changed dramatically, as strong exports, reduced production, and a rapidly recovering oil market moved polyethylene prices higher while polypropylene held steady, according to...
Many processors tapped the spot market, fearing that this would be their last chance at these stellar prices. Others decided to wait, not because of price, but rather uncertainty regarding future business.
Trade flow from both buyers and sellers was fluid last week and transacted volumes rivaled the average tally seen during the strong first quarter of 2020, reports the PlasticsExchange in its Market Update.
A $0.01/lb spot increase for most commodity-grade polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) resins last week was a small, yet meaningful, uptick compared to the much larger decline seen over the past couple of months, notes the PlasticsExchange.
Dow announced last week that it will idle three polyethylene plants for at least one month to help balance against lower demand and diminishing storage space. The PlasticsExchange expects other producers to follow suit.
Aside from worldwide resin demand taking a huge coronavirus hit, the loss of easily exporting incremental pounds from North America probably will require the short term rationing of resin production, perhaps even the shutdown of some crackers and...