21 July 2009 21:42 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--US liquid epoxy resin (LER) prices were expected to rise later in the third quarter on the back of higher feedstock costs, but weak demand could prevent any major moves, buyers said on Tuesday.
Sources speculated that new price increase announcements would emerge within the next two weeks, which would position sellers to implement hikes in September.
“I still get the feeling that everyone is clamouring for business,” a small buyer in the western US said.
The source said he recently purchased a truckload from a domestic supplier at just under $1.00/lb ($2,205/tonne or €1,544/tonne), although most prices for bulk LER were in the range of $1.00-1.10/lb DEL (delivered).
Sources on the east coast said bulk deliveries below $1.00/lb were still readily available. Meanwhile, average prices in the midwestern US were around $1.05/lb.
A mid-volume buyer said imported LER was being quoted at $1.02-1.04/lb DEL for September delivery, up a few cents from previous months.
A larger LER buyer said there had been no support for price increases in July, and prices would remain flat until demand improved.
Customers in industrial end markets were getting quotes on new business, which could presage an actual pickup in demand during the latter part of the third quarter, the buyer said.
“Everybody’s kind of treading water, trying to spread pain through the chain until volume comes back,” he added. “I don’t think people are losing volume share.”
US LER producers include Hexion, Huntsman and Dow Chemical.
($1 = €0.70)
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