Honeywell plans second N American nylon 6 hike in two months

13 January 2011 22:18  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Honeywell Resins & Chemicals will seek to raise North American nylon 6 contract prices by 15 cents/lb ($331/tonne, €252/tonne) effective 1 February, the specialty chemicals producer said on Thursday.

Honeywell and two other producers announced price initiatives in December seeking nylon 6 and nylon 6,6 increases of 10-12 cents/lb, effective 1 January.

Regarding the new price effort, the company said it “re-evaluated” its pricing on specialty polymer nylon products because of strong global demand and continued raw material price increases, especially caprolactam.

The increase would cover all fibre grade and neat nylon 6 polymer for spinning and compounding applications, Honeywell said.

“Wow,” a buyer said. “They will kill the goose. It’s too much too fast.”

The buyer said the initiative appeared to be based more on upstream oil pricing than on demand.

NYMEX crude oil futures hit a 27-month high of $92.58/bbl on 3 January, while new home construction (carpet fibres) and automobile manufacturing (engineering plastics) are still significantly down from typical non-recessionary levels, arguing against such steep price-hike efforts, the buyer said.

Housing starts, for example, are expected to total 780,000 in 2011 – up from 600,000 in 2010 but far from the 2005 peak of 2.07m housing starts, according to the US Census Bureau.

Based on 2009 and 2010 housing starts and the forecast for 2011, that three-year period will amount to the market’s worst since housing-start data began being collected in 1959, according to the American Chemical Council (ACC).

Most grades of nylon 6 resin rose 5 cents/lb stemming from September-October initiatives. The price range for industrial-grade nylon 6 resin was assessed by ICIS at S1.41–1.56/lb.

($1 = €0.76)

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For more on caprolactam visit ICIS chemical intelligence
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By: Larry Terry
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