US Dow announces 4 cent/lb increase for February LDPE

06 January 2012 20:24  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US polyethylene (PE) producer Dow Chemical announced it will implement a 4 cent/lb ($88/tonne, €69/tonne) increase on all low density polyethylene (LDPE) resins, effective on 1 February, sources said on Friday.

The price increase for the LDPE material is in addition to previously announced price increases, including a 6 cent/lb increase proposed for January, according to a customer letter obtained by ICIS.

Dow was also believed to have announced an additional 3 cent/lb increase for pipe grade PE, effective on 1 February, sources said.

LDPE has been particularly tight in recent weeks, following an early December LDPE outage at NOVA Chemical's 186,000 tonne/year  Moore, Ontario, plant.

Nova announced on 4 January it was declaring force majeure on all LDPE material produced at the Moore plant. The company said it had no indication of when it would be able to supply customers' needs.

ExxonMobil was also believed to have had recent problems with its 235,000 tonne/year LDPE plant in Beaumont, sources said. The company shut down a reactor at the plant on 25 December after some high pressure tubing ruptured, according to a filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

Sources said they believed the facility was down for 3-4 days, but that it has since been restarted. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Pipe-grade PE has been in high demand  recently, because of activity related to shale gas drilling, sources said.

Prices for LDPE liner grade are at 8082 cents/lb delivered (DEL) for small volume buyers, as assessed by ICIS. ICIS does not assess pipe-grade PE.

($1 = €0.78)

For more on polyethylene visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Michelle Klump
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