01 April 2008 20:38 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--US aromatics traders said on Tuesday that they expect benzene spot prices to move higher in April, due to expected peak demand from gasoline blenders.
Spot prices could break $4.00/gal ($1,200/tonne) within the next month or two, according to trade sources speaking on the sidelines of the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA) annual meeting in San Antonio, Texas,
One benzene trader from the East coast said the projected increase in spot prices was in line with a record high spot deal done at $4.35/gal in April 2007.
Benzene spot prices reached a range high of $4.20-4.30/gal FOB (free on board) HTC (Houston-Texas City) in April 2007, according to global chemical market intelligence service ICIS pricing.
Current prompt benzene spot levels are at $3.78-3.82/gal FOB (free on board) HTC (Houston-Texas City), according to aromatics traders.
The range was down from $3.93-3.95/gal FOB HTC on 1 March, according to ICIS pricing.
Major US benzene producers include ExxonMobil, Equistar and BP.For more on benzene visit ICIS chemical intelligence
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