Europe June nylon 6,6 contracts up €0.10/kg on BD cost hike

14 June 2011 23:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--European nylon 6,6 June contracts have settled at an increase of €0.10/kg ($0.14/kg) from May as a result of rising feedstock butadiene (BD) costs, buyers and sellers said on Tuesday.

“June nylon 6,6 increased by €0.10/kg on the BD pass-through,” a nylon 6,6 producer said.

Virgin polymer nylon 6,6 (or polyamide 6,6) June contracts were finalised at €2.90–3.10/kg FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe). Prices were viewed as high as €3.25/kg, but this was not widely confirmed.

June BD contract prices increased by €270/tonne. Nylon 6,6 can be manufactured via two routes: either from adipic acid or from BD via adiponitrile.

Nylon 6,6 supply is tight and demand strong. Nevertheless, availability has been improving throughout the second quarter as order backlogs caused by production problems earlier in the year were worked through and feedstock supply became more available.

“We suffered in Q4 2010 and the first half of 2011 [in terms of supply],” a nylon 6,6 buyer said. “It’s still difficult, but not as difficult as it was.”

High nylon 6,6 consumption is being driven by strong automotive buying interest because of exports to Asia, where strong GDP growth and upward social mobility in China has been driving demand. There have been signs of Asian demand weakening in the past few weeks because of unfavourable exchange rates, but consumption remains at healthy levels.

Traditionally, automotive demand falls in August as a result of maintenance among end-users. Some players, however, are seeing signs that in 2011 there will not be a slowdown, because of the demand from Asia. These sources added that they are already seeing order volumes for July and August above what they are able to fulfil.

European nylon 6 supply remains tight because of difficulties in sourcing feedstock caprolactam (capro). Capro shortages have been caused by a heavy maintenance period during the third quarter. Capro availability is expected to improve in July, which may cause nylon 6 price falls, as August is traditionally a slower month for nylon 6 demand because of end-user holiday closures.


For more on nylon, visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Mark Victory
+44 208 652 3214

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