12 April 2011 23:59 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--European April epichlorohydrin (ECH) contract prices have settled between a rollover and an increase of €10/tonne ($14/tonne) from March, as ample availability restricted producers’ more ambitious price targets, sources said on Tuesday.
The size of the month-on-month price increase depended on the supplier, as some were stricter in enforcing their price targets than others, according to buyers.
Upstream propylene has risen by €250/tonne since December 2010, while ECH has only risen by €60-100/tonne during the same period. As a result, many producers were looking to bring margins back to a more acceptable level.
The majority of buyers argued that while raw material costs had risen, there was plenty of material available on the spot and contract markets, so the best that most sellers could achieve were slightly inflated prices compared with March.
One producer said it settled at a rollover, while a second said it managed to achieve a €40-60/tonne hike and was forced to import material from the US in order to keep up with rising demand.
Some other manufacturers reported price increases of around €30/tonne due to the recent feedstock increases, but these customers were starting from lower levels. The majority of recorded prices fell within the ICIS range of €1,830–1,860/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe).
($1 = €0.69)
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