Corrected: INEOS NOVA targets €110/tonne rise for Europe February PS

02 February 2011 12:38  [Source: ICIS news]

Correction: In the ICIS news story headlined "INEOS NOVA targets €110/tonne rise for Europe February PS" dated 2 February 2011, please read in the second paragraph …and €1,267/tonne… instead of …€1,276/tonne…. A corrected story follows.

LONDON (ICIS)--INEOS NOVA is targeting a €110/tonne ($153/tonne) increase for its February polystyrene (PS) business in Europe following February styrene monomer contract settlements, and will also seek to increase the price delta between general purpose PS (GPPS) and high impact PS (HIPS) to €100/tonne, the company said on Wednesday.

Styrene barge contracts were settled at €1,320/tonne and €1,267/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe) on Tuesday, up €105/tonne and €78/tonne, respectively.

A third contract was agreed between one pair of settlers at €1,310/tonne, up €105/tonne from the previous month, the buyer involved said on Wednesday.

Styrolution announced a €105/tonne increase for its February PS business on Tuesday, 1 February.

GPPS prices were trading at €1,450-1,480/tonne FD NWE on a net basis at medium-sized accounts.

The delta between the two PS grades has risen to as much as €80/tonne in recent months, as the cost of polybutadiene, used in the manufacture of HIPS, soared.

While buyers felt there might not be much room for discussion over PS increases in February, as the supply/demand balance was fine, at least one large buyer did not expect to be paying an increased differential for its HIPS.

“I accepted a big increase in January for my PS, but the amount I accepted was linked to a reduction in my GPPS/HIPS delta. They can’t reduce prices one month and then increase them back again the next,” said the buyer.

The move to increase the GPPS/HIPS delta did not seem to be a market-wide one.

Buyers were increasingly frustrated over PS increases in Europe. January prices had risen by €100-130/tonne, and February was looking difficult for them.

Several buyers had said that new capacity installations in future would involve polypropylene (PP) and not PS.

GPPS is used widely in the food packaging sector.

($1 = €0.72)

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By: Linda Naylor
+44 20 8652 3214

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