06 April 2010 17:12 [Source: ICIS news]
Correction: In the ICIS news story headlined "April IPEX rises 5.9%, returns to Jan 2008 levels" dated 6 April 2010, please read in the fourth paragraph … ethylene … instead of … ethanol…. A corrected story follows.
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The ICIS Petrochemical Index (IPEX) for April rose by 5.9%, continuing a five-month increase that brought average chemical prices back to January 2008 levels.
Gains in the US and the EU brought the April index to 295.28, up 16.37 points from March.
Prices for half of the chemicals in the index rose simultaneously in the US and the EU, while prices for seven fell in Asia. The big gainer was butadiene (BD), where tight supply drove prices up by 33% in the EU and 20% in the US and prompted force majeure (FM) among acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) manufacturers.
Prices were mainly flat in Asia due to the Lunar New Year holiday that kept markets closed for most of March. Methanol prices in Asia fell by nearly 14% while those for ethylene decreased by 7%.
Published at the beginning of each month, the IPEX provides an independent indicator of average change in world petrochemical prices.
Dating back to January 1993, historical ICIS prices for a basket of 12 essential petrochemical grades in the US, western Europe and the northeast Asian markets have been weighted by regional nameplate capacity to generate a monthly index value.
The IPEX product basket comprises ethylene, propylene, benzene, toluene, paraxylene (PX), styrene, methanol, butadiene, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS).
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