US September cumene prices increase by 5%

03 September 2010 20:23  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US September cumene formula-prices rose 5% on the back of higher costs for feedstock benzene and refinery grade propylene (RGP), sources said on Friday.

The September cumene price was assessed by ICIS at 45-46 cents/lb ($992-1,014/tonne or €774-791/tonne), up 2 cents/lb from 43-44 cents/lb in August.

The cumene price is based on feedstocks benzene and the spot RGP average.

US September benzene contracts were settled at $3.01/gal as tight supply scenarios allowed producers to push an increase over August prices. The settlement was nearly 8% above August contract levels of $2.79/gal FOB (free on board) Houston, in line with market expectations.

RGP prices have averaged around 44 cents/lb over the last two weeks, nearly at par with the price one month ago.

Robust demand for phenol derivatives kept phenol and acetone operating rates strong in the US, leading to tight cumene supplies. Both phenol and acetone are feedstocks for bisphenol A (BPA), which is used to make polycarbonate (PC).

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

($1 = €0.78)

For more on cumene visit ICIS chemical intelligence
To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect



By: Heather McGuire Doyle
+1 713 525 2653



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