US cumene prices for June tumble 17% on feedstock drop

04 June 2010 21:10  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--June cumene values tumbled by 17% on the back of weaker feedstock benzene and refinery grade propylene (RGP) prices, sources said on Friday.

Buyers and sellers said the June formula price has moved down to 44-45 cents/lb ($970-992/tonne, €795-813/tonne).

The June price was 9 cents/lb less than the May contract of 53-54 cents/lb, according to ICIS pricing.

The cumene formula price was driven by feedstocks refinery grade propylene (RGP) and benzene. 

The June contract price for US benzene settled down by 57 cents/gal, or 16% below May, on a drastic fall in spot prices throughout the past month, sources said.

The June benzene price was agreed upon at $2.95/gal ($897/tonne) on FOB (free on board) US Gulf (USG) terms. That compared with the May contract at $3.52/gal FOB USG.

The US aromatics sector saw prices nose dive in the middle of May in response to lower crude oil values.

Meanwhile, the average RGP price fell 10 cents to 42 cents/lb.

Blue Island Phenol, Citgo, Dow Chemical, Flint Hills Resources, Georgia Gulf, INEOS, Marathon, and Shell were among the cumene producers in the US.

($1 = €0.82)

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Author: Heather Doyle

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