26 January 2005 17:16 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (CNI)--Solvents spot prices in Europe have continued to ease as producers recover from very low stock positions at the end of 2004, market players told CNI Wednesday.
Various global production hiccups in the latter part of 2004 resulted in tight supplies of iso-propanol (IPA), methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) and methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK).
However, solvent producers have been running their plants at normal operating rates from the end of December, allowing stocks to recover and prices to ease.
Iso-propanol prices have fallen by Euro 60/tonne over the last four weeks to Euro1240-1300/tonne free delivered Northwest Europe (FD NWE), according to global price reporting and market intelligence service ICIS-LOR*.
Methyl ethyl ketone prices have also fallen over the same period, by Euro80/tonne to Euro1300-1390/tonne FD NWE. Methyl iso-butyl ketone prices are now pegged at Euro1320-1380/tonne FD NWE, down Euro70/tonne since the start of 2005.
Sellers to the solvents market said that the price erosion seen in recent weeks is not the start of a downward spiral, but rather a price correction to return values to more realistic market levels.
*ICIS-LOR is part of the same publishing group as CNI.
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