US spot ACN prices resume upward trend on tight supply

08 April 2011 22:39  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US spot acrylonitrile (ACN) prices continued to rise on Friday, sources said, as supply tightened following a force majeure (FM) and a plant shutdown.

Deals were heard at $2,880/tonne (€2,016/tonne) FOB (free on board) from North America to a European acrylic fibre (AF) producer, and $2,890/tonne FOB from Brazil, according to market sources.

The deals pushed the US Gulf (USG) spot market assessment on the high end to $2,750-2,900/tonne FOB, up from $2,750-2,800 a day earlier, according to market sources.

A producer also said a deal was done above $3,000/tonne for delivery in North America. That deal, however, was not thought to be representative of the market, but was instead a result of supply shortages caused by the FM and a plant shutdown.

US producer Cornerstone Chemical declared FM on ACN at its 227,250 tonne/year ACN plant in Fortier, Louisiana, effective on 4 April. The company has also put customers on 75% sales allocation ahead of its planned turnaround in May.

In addition, Taiwan’s China Petrochemical Development Corp (CDPC) shut down one of its ACN lines with 95,000 tonnes/year of capacity after a worker died in a plant accident on 5 April.

Another factor contributing to higher prices is the expected settlement of the US April propylene contract prices. Most USG ACN players are expecting significant increases to their costs for the feedstock.

Major US ACN producers are Ascend Performance Materials, Cornerstone and INEOS Nitriles.

 ($1 = €0.70)

To learn more about acrylonitrile visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Michelle Klump
+1 713 525 2653

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