02 February 2011 02:50 [Source: ICIS news]
By Junie Lin
TV panel manufacturers had finally brought their inventory back to safe levels, after being in surplus for about three months since September last year, based on a recent report by research firm DisplaySearch.
In December 2010, the producers had estimated seven to eight days’ worth of inventory at the end of December, down from 10-12 days’ worth in October, according to the report.
Surplus inventories of TV panels had restrained manufacturing activities in the downstream light-guided panels (LGP) for (LED) light emitting diode (LED) TV industry, consequently, depressing demand for raw materials MMA and PMMA.
Lacklustre demand had kept MMA prices for cargoes of more than 500 tonnes rangebound at $2,350-2,400/tonne (€1,692-1,728/tonne) CFR (cost and freight) SE (southeast)
Over the same period, optical grade PMMA prices fell by 6% to average at $3,000/tonne CFR NE Asia on 27 January, according to industry sources.
Optical grade PMMA is a key component for the production of light emitting diodes (LED) used in ultra-thin screen TVs.
The electrical equipment sector led by flat-screen TVs had kept MMA and PMMA supply tight early last year, buoying up prices until the strong build-up of surplus TV panel inventory in September.
MMA and PMMA makers were basing their optimism on market prospects from the high sales and production targets set by most major TV brands, such as Samsung and LG, industry sources said.
Increased orders may again tighten supply as was the case in early 2010, they said.
Meanwhile, most PMMA plants were expected to remain operating at high rates during the Lunar New Year festivity early this month, allowing them to build up inventory in anticipation of strong sales after the holidays.
This also meant continued strong demand for MMA despite the holiday season.
($1 = €0.72)
Read John Richardson and Malini Hariharan’s blog – Asian Chemical Connections
For more on MMA and PMMA chemical visit ICIS chemical intelligence
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|
Asian Chemical Connections