US March methanol rolls over as spot trades higher

25 February 2011 18:48  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US March methanol contract rolled over on Friday as spot prices rose another 2.5 cents/gal on the continuing surge in oil prices.

Southern Chemical (SCC) nominated 126 cents/gal, the same as its February price. That put the March methanol contract range once again at 126-128 cents/gal, a repeat of February.

On Thursday, Methanex rolled its March price at February’s 128 cents/gal.

Methanex and SCC historically have set the monthly North American contract methanol range with their nominations.

Earlier in the week, methanol sources said either the March contract would fall or spot prices had to rise to tighten the wide gap between the two.

Spot prices rose, with a producer on Friday selling two barges for March delivery at 111.5 cents/gal, moving the range to 108-112 cents/gal from 107-108 cents/gal previously.

The higher end represents spot barge prices at the Mississippi river, and the lower end covers prices in Houston and elsewhere on the US Gulf coast.

NYMEX front-month crude futures moved higher in Friday morning trading, reaching a high of $99.20/bbl before falling back to around $97.60/bbl at midday, still above Thursday’s close of $97.28/bbl.

Methanol prices, as with many petrochemicals, tend to track crude values over the long term.

($1 = €0.72)

For more on methanol visit ICIS chemical intelligence

To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect

By: Lane Kelley
+1 713 525 2653

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