US June PP contracts fall 15 cents/lb on lower propylene

17 June 2011 17:16  [Source: ICIS news]

US June PP contracts fall 15 cents/lbHOUSTON (ICIS)--US polypropylene (PP) June contract prices fell by 14%, pressured by a 15 cent/lb ($331/tonne, €235/tonne) drop in feedstock costs, market sources said on Friday.

US PP contract prices for June were assessed at 93-95 cents/lb DEL (delivered), down 15 cents/lb from May, reflecting the pass-through of lower propylene prices.

The June contract price was down from 108-110 cents/lb DEL in May, according to ICIS.

Most of the US PP market has a monomer-based contract that follows the monthly polymer grade propylene (PGP) cost. With the 15 cent/lb drop in propylene, US PGP settled at 82 cents/lb for June, pressured by loosening supply and lower spot prices in recent weeks.

Some buyers who do not use the monomer-plus pricing tried to seek greater discounts, based on market weakness, but those efforts were not successful, market sources said.

Despite the drop, buyers said they would not purchase more material than they absolutely need in June, based on the assumption that propylene prices will drop again in July.

"I'm not buying much," said one buyer. "We are just doing minimum purchases until we see some really attractive spot offers, and we will take advantage of that."

PGP traded this week at 79.50 cents/lb for both June and July delivery.

Major North American PP producers include LyondellBasell, ExxonMobil, INEOS, Total, Formosa, Phillips Sumika, Braskem Americas, Pinnacle Polymers, ConocoPhillips, Flint Hills Resources and Dow Chemical.

($1 = 0.71)

For more on polypropylene visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Michelle Klump
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