Europe July acetone MMA contract down €64/tonne to €934/tonne

30 June 2011 17:28  [Source: ICIS news]

PORVOO, FINLAND (ICIS)—The European July acetone methyl methacrylate (MMA) contract price has settled at €934/tonne ($1,354), down €64/tonne from June, on the back of lower propylene costs and improved availability, a major producer and a major consumer confirmed on Thursday.

The acetone MMA contract was settled on a free delivered (FD) northwest Europe (NWE) basis.

The buyer said: “The [reduction to] €934/tonne for July will be higher than just the propylene-related decrease because of changing market conditions.”

The contract price is typically agreed on a gross basis, and then calculated to a net basis for publication purposes.

In relation to the July settlement, the producer said: “MMA July settled at €934/tonne.

“[Propylene] has come down €75/tonne; thus MMA has come down with a bit more. Acetone availability in Europe has improved a little and we also see some acetone coming from overseas.”

The producer stressed that only “a few customers” can buy imported material as a result of storage capacity and transportation costs, adding that demand in Europe is still strong.

A major buyer reacted to the July contract price by saying it was “too high”.

In the acetone spot market, prices have come under pressure as supply has improved following various outage and production problems caused by cumene availability issues during the first and second quarters.

Spot acetone in Europe is currently valued at just below €1,000/tonne FD NWE, although lower prices are rumoured in the market.

When the European market was at its tightest during CEPSA’s shutdown in Huelva Spain and INEOS Phenol’s production problems caused by lack of cumene, spot acetone was trading at a high of €1,100–1,185/tonne in northwest Europe on a free delivered basis and a sale was recorded at a record high of €1,400/tonne into Italy.

While demand from major derivatives MMA and bisphenol A (BPA) remains steady to strong, a notable dip in demand had been seen in the solvents sector. In addition, European production is now running normally.

($1 = €0.69)

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By: Julia Meehan
+44 20 8652 3214

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