Europe nylon 6,6 Q1 prices up on feedstock costs, supply/demand

08 February 2011 23:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Nylon 6,6 (or polyamide 6,6) first quarter domestic prices rose by €0.15-0.20/kg ($0.20-0.27/kg), due to rising feedstock costs, tight supply and strong demand, sources said on Tuesday.

The bulk of first quarter virgin polymer nylon 6,6 business was trading at €2.75-2.90/kg FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe). Some players saw prices as high as €3.00/kg.

This was not currently confirmed by the majority but several sources said prices could hit this level in March if feedstock costs were to increase further.

Traditionally, nylon 6,6 domestic prices have settled on a quarterly basis, but an increasing number of players were settling monthly prices because of a similar movement in the upstream butadiene (BD) market.

Nylon 6,6 can be manufactured by two routes - either using adipic acid as feedstock, or adiponitrile via butadiene.

Consumption remained high, driven by downstream automotive exports to Asia, sources said.

High automotive buying interest in Asia was the result of GDP growth and upward social mobility in China. It was believed that more than 50% of finished German automotives were being shipped to Asia, according to sources.

Nylon 6,6 remained structurally short following market rationalisation during the economic downturn of 2008 and 2009, players said.

Rhodia’s force majeure (FM) on adipic acid and downstream products, including nylon 6,6, at Chalampe, France, remained in place, a company source said, and would remain so until traffic on the disrupted river Rhine returned to normal. 

Initially, Rhodia had been forced to declare the FM on Wednesday 8 December because of a breakage in its ketone anone (KA) oil utility, which meant it had to stop adipic acid production. The FM was then extended because of shipping congestion on the Rhine.  

A separate FM at Rhodia on adipontirile (ADN) and nylon 6,6 was enacted on Friday 4 February, the company confirmed in a statement. Because of the second declaration, nylon 6,6 was expected to remain under FM until early March, the source confirmed.

($1 = €0.74)

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By: Mark Victory
+44 208 652 3214

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