30 May 2008 08:11 [Source: ICIS news]
"Weaker energy and benzene numbers have caused SM prices to come under downward pressure," said a trader in east China.
The decline in FOB (free on board) Korea values was more pronounced with prices slipping $30-40/tonne over the past two days. July numbers were quoted at around $1,620-1,630/tonne, down from the mid-week prices of $1,650-1,670/tonne.
Prices on a CFR (cost and freight) China basis were marginally lower at around $1,660-1,675/tonne, compared to $1,660-1,680/tonne mid-week.
"The easing of FOB Korea numbers was expected, given its rapid run-up over the past few days," said another trader in northeast (NE) Asia. "Now the spread between FOB Korea and CFR China looks more normal."
A decline in crude oil values to below $127/bbl overnight amid a strengthening US dollar and weak gasoline demand in the US had weighed on benzene numbers in Asia.
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