04 June 2008 05:47 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Asian petrochemical prices fell on Wednesday in response to US July crude oil futures, which slipped below the $124/bbl (€80.60/bbl) level during the morning trade before easing to $124.25/bbl by noon, down $0.06 from Tuesday's close.
US crude futures for July delivery sank $3.45/bbl on Tuesday to settle at $124.31/bbl after a surprising rise in factory orders for April supported the US dollar.
A warning from the US Federal Reserve that inflation could worsen as a result of a weak dollar and a statement by Kuwait’s oil minister that OPEC was ready to raise output if needed also pressured the market.
In response to the softer crude markets, Asian naphtha prices fell in early Wednesday trade.
Naphtha opened $24.50/tonne lower in Asia, with second half July indications pegged at $1,088-1,091/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Japan, first half August at $1,083.50-1,086.50/tonne and second half August at $1,080-1,083/tonne. No trades were seen late Tuesday.
In the aromatics sector, Asian benzene prices dropped $30-35/tonne during the morning trading session with prices assessed at $1,270-1,280/tonne FOB (free on board) Korea, according to global chemical market intelligence service ICIS pricing.
Benzene was heard offered at $1,285/tonne FOB Korea for July loading, $40/tonne lower than Tuesday’s offers, while bids were heard pegged at $1,265-1,268/tonne FOB Korea.
The overnight slide in crude also contributed to lower toluene prices to $1,215-1,225/tonne FOB Korea in early Wednesday’s trade. An offer for a July loading cargo was heard at $1,230/tonne, with a bid at $1,210/tonne.Desmond Chia, Mahua Chakravarty and Ignacio Sotolong contributed to the story
($1 = €0.65)
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