22 January 2010 23:59 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--European producers of expandable polystyrene (EPS) secured January price increases of €140-150/tonne ($197-211/tonne) based on rising feedstock styrene monomer (SM) costs, sources confirmed on Friday.
January EPS prices were assessed at €1,170-1,230/tonne FD (free delivered) ?xml:namespace>
Producers had originally spoken about hikes of €170-185/tonne when the January European styrene barge contract settled at €1,018/tonne, up €172/tonne from December.
Although producers scaled back their initial thoughts, most buyers said that they had little choice but to accept the increases that were finally imposed.
The protracted absence of profitable trading for EPS producers in
“Producers said, ‘No discussion; you’re taking [the increase]’,” a large buyer of packaging-grade EPS said.
Another buyer commented that it would be very difficult for buyers to pass on any of the increase.
“It is not so easy to discuss with customers,” he said.
Current demand was described by market players as low, but in line with seasonal norms for late January. A distributor said that processors were currently buying only what they required for now and not for anticipated consumption in February.
European EPS producers include BASF, Sunpor, Polimeri, Sunde, StyroChem and Synthos.
($1 = €0.71)
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