London blasts: Asian benzene players in wait-and-see stance
08 July 2005 03:38 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (CNI)--Asian benzene players were adopting a wait-and-see stance this morning, having retreated from the market late last evening after a series of bomb blasts ripped through London, killing at least 37 people.
Players expected any impact from the blasts on benzene prices to be temporary, as demand and supply fundamentals supported a bullish market outlook. Benzene prices had strengthened on Thursday, before news of the blasts filtered in, to $955/tonne FOB Korea, up $55/tonne from early in the week.
According to one trader, buyers were expected to lower their bids later today in anticipation of panic selling by traders with high inventories. Also likely to spur the lower bids was the wide gap between offers and bids in the US towards close of trading yesterday. Spot bids for July late yesterday afternoon were heard at $3.15/gal FOB US Gulf Coast, well below offers at $3.28/gal FOB US Gulf Coast.
However, suppliers would not succumb to buyers' pressure, but would hold on to their cargoes until their expectations were met, the trader added.
A South Korean producer said it expected offers to rise this afternoon from yesterday's levels, due to the volatility in crude prices.
Immediately after the bomb blasts, Brent crude for August fell by around $4.18/bbl to $55.67/bbl but had recovered to $59.25/bbl by close of trading yesterday on concerns over Hurricane Dennis heading towards the US Gulf Coast. West Texas Intermediate crude for August settled at $60.73/bbl, after fluctuating between $59.05/bbl and $61/bbl during the day.
By: Prema Viswanathan+65 6780 4359
The four bomb blasts, which occurred during London’s rush hour, left at least 37 people dead and 700 injured. At least 45 people have been either critically or seriously injured.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said the attacks bore all the hallmarks of the al-Qaeda network.
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