22 January 2008 18:31 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--Polyethylene (PE) sellers in Europe were making it clear that they would be aiming for more price hikes next month, even before settling all January business, market sources said on Tuesday.
Dow had already announced a formal €50/tonne ($72/tonne) increase to its customers for February, and two other major PE producers said they would also be seeking to achieve another €50/tonne in February.
January business was still not fully settled, but increases of €50-70/tonne were reported across the board.
“We cannot subsidise the
PE buyers in the
“They are just getting as much as they can while they can,” said a large buyer on Monday, referring to PE volumes which were expected to move into
Current PE price levels in
“Concerns over rising prices are not strong enough to stimulate buying interest,” said another buyer on Tuesday. “I can’t see them taking it too far in February.”
Discussions for February PE business were not expected to get fully under way until the end of January/beginning of February.
The new bi-monthly ethylene settlement for February and March would set the tone for PE, and the direction of this was still not clear as naphtha prices remained unstable
Crude rallied a little, to $87.79/bbl after an announcement by the US Federal Reserve of a larger than expected 0.75 percentage point cut in interest rates, and naphtha followed, ending at $795-805/tonne CIF (cost, insurance and freight) NWE (northwest Europe), up $11/tonne on the buy-side of the range set earlier in the day.
LDPE prices remained well above the €1,300/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest
($1 = €0.69)
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