US April BD proposed up to 20% higher on rising crude, tight supply

25 March 2011 22:48  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US butadiene (BD) contracts were nominated higher by as much as 20% for April on the back of rising crude oil prices, tight supply and continued firm demand, market sources said on Friday.

One producer led with a nomination of plus 21 cents/lb ($463/tonne, €329/tonne), which would place April contracts at $1.25/lb. The March contract settled at $1.04/lb.

Meanwhile, the other three producers nominated plus 17 cents/lb, which would put their April contracts at $1.21/lb.

One producer said such large monthly increases could continue in the months ahead, as supply is expected to remain tight with a series of industry turnarounds scheduled to begin in April.

In addition, crude prices are still increasing and two US producers remain on sales allocation.

Historically, BD has settled at the lowest nomination. However, a split settlement was considered likely for April, extending a trend from recent months.

One producer questioned whether it might be better to do away with the nominating process altogether, assuming settlements continue to be split.

US BD producers include ExxonMobil, INEOS, LyondellBasell, Shell and TPC Group.

Additional reporting by Ben DuBose

($1 = €0.71)

For more on butadiene visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Gene Lockard
1 713 525 2653

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