07 December 2010 23:59 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)-- European epichlorohydrin (ECH) contract prices fell by €10/tonne ($13/tonne) at the low end of the range in December due to the continuing seasonal downturn in demand from the downstream epoxy resin sector.
This is the second month in a row prices have fallen by €10/tonne, and the decrease could have been steeper had the sluggish demand not been offset by the €22/tonne increase in upstream propylene this month, according to sources.
Several buyers and sellers said they settled at a rollover because of these competing market forces, with suppliers resisting the price cuts as much as they could.
One producer confessed it wanted to limit the downturn in numbers, saying: “Once values fall it is difficult to get them back up.”
On many accounts a slight price decline was seen, however, mainly on grades used in the epoxy resin market, where prices had fallen by €150-200/tonne in the fourth quarter, and buying interest from the downstream coatings and construction industries were undergoing their traditional off-season, according to players.
A couple of customers negotiated decreases of up to €20/tonne, but the majority of business was done within the €1,730-1,800/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe) range reported by ICIS.
($1 = €0.75)
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