Five cent/lb price hike emerges for March US PVC - buyers

11 February 2010 21:38  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--One US polyvinyl chloride (PVC) producer has issued a 5 cent/lb ($110/tonne, €80/tonne) price hike effective 1 March, buyers and distributors said on Thursday.

The price initiative follows 5 cent/lb upward increments sought for both January and February, totalling 15 cents/lb in increases sought for the first quarter.

While all US PVC producers announced 5 cents/lb hikes for January and February, only one supplier has announced thus far for March, sources said.  

Suppliers said the full 5-cent move was mostly implemented in January and full implementation of the February hike was likely to follow.

Contract settlements for January were largely finalised, with implementation ranging from 4-5 cents/lb, according to several sources, including buyers.

The February increase push has been more subdued, allowing some buyers to expect a combined settlement.

A combination was unlikely, however, given the strong January implementation, sources said.

In addition, February’s PVC contracts continued to be under negotiation, sources said.

PVC contracts were last assessed for December at 63-65 cents/lb delivered for pipe-grade and 67-69 cents/lb delivered for general purpose, according to global chemical intelligence service ICIS pricing.

Swiftly rising feedstock ethylene costs supported the producers’ first-quarter initiatives, buyers and sellers said.

Ethylene producers sought to raise contracts by 7.5 cents/lb in January, but buyer resistance has stalled settlements.

Ethylene contracts were last assessed in December at 43 cents/lb, up 1.75 cents/lb from November, according to ICIS pricing.

PVC uses ethylene and chlorine as main production components. Chlorine supply is largely integrated from basic chlor-alkali processes.

Most, but not all, PVC producers are also chlorine producers.

US PVC producers include Formosa Plastics, Georgia Gulf, Westlake Chemical and Shintech, among others.

($1= €0.73)

For more on PVC visit ICIS chemical intelligence
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By: Judith Taylor
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