US methanol spot prices rise 3 cents on supply issues - sources

05 May 2011 00:12  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US methanol spot barge prices rose 3 cents/gal on Wednesday as sources cited plant issues in the Caribbean and South America.

Spot prices rose to 108-110 cents/gal, following a hike of almost 2 cents/gal to 105-107 cents/gal on Tuesday. Confirmed trades this week have been in the 105-107 cents/gal range for May, with a trade for June delivery at 108 cents/gal.

Trade talk focused on buying related to turnarounds scheduled for late April and mid-May at two plants in Venezuela. 

Methanol and ammonia sources on Wednesday said they were notified by the state-run gas company in Trinidad that plants there would have gas supplies curtailed for at least another week.

However, a spokeswoman for the company said late last week that full natural gas service had been restored to ammonia and methanol plants in Trinidad.

Another reason for the increase came from what one source said was a delayed reaction to a recent Methanex conference call.

In the 28 April call, Methanex CEO Bruce Aitken said there was a small chance the company’s plant in Chile might have to close because of natgas supply problems. A methanol source said the rise in spot prices this week was based on “real concern” that the Methanex plant in Punta Arenas would be closed for the winter.

The source said the trades were “mainly producer-buying, or traders buying to supply producers”.

For more on methanol visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Lane Kelley
+1 713 525 2653

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