14 January 2011 21:31 [Source: ICIS news]
Propane has fallen more than $100/tonne (€75/tonne) since the beginning of the year.
One trader said that demand for naphtha from the petrochemical sector was limited as the competing LPG feedstock was much cheaper.
Another trader noted that one of the reasons for the recent trend of naphtha cargoes being shipped to Asia was the decrease in LPG prices.
However, some market sources from the petrochemical sector noted that crackers were still primarily using naphtha as propylene and butane demand was still strong and prices were still relatively high.
One view was that as crackers were different, and therefore have different economics, some were able to easily switch to using LPG, but that this flexibility was only limited to a few units in Europe.
Butane cargo prices were reported at $875-880/tonne while propane cargo prices were assessed at $880-900/tonne CIF (cost, insurance and freight) NWE (Northwest Europe) on Friday, compared with $855-860/tonne and $1,010-1,020/tonne reported on the 24 December, respectively.
The naphtha price range for cargoes on Friday was at $863-871/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE, while on 24 December it was at $861-871/tonne.
($1 = €0.75)
To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect
For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.
Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.
|ICIS news FREE TRIAL|
|Get access to breaking chemical news as it happens.|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX)|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX). Download the free tabular data and a chart of the historical index|