Europe-Asia PX, US-Asia IX price spreads widen

11 January 2012 04:10  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--The Europe-Asia paraxylene (PX) and US-Asia isomer-grade xylene (IX) price spreads widened late on Tuesday following gains seen in Asian prices.

The Europe-Asia PX price spread stood at $187.50/tonne (€146.30/tonne) on 10 January, $11.50/tonne higher than the previous day, while the US-Asia IX price spread hovered at $76.50/tonne, or $15/tonne wider than 9 January.

Europe PX prices were assessed as stable at $1,400-1,410/tonne FOB (free on board) Rotterdam on 10 January while Asia PX values were at $1,590-1,595/tonne CFR Taiwan and/or China Main Port (CMP).

The inter-region arbitrage window remained technically open on paper, with freight costs for a 10,000-tonne shipment hovering in the high-$80s/tonne.

US IX prices stood at $1,186-1,216/tonne FOB US Gulf, stable from 9 January, while Asia IX values were at $1,270-1,275/tonne FOB Korea and $1,275-1,280/tonne CFR northeast Asia.

The cross-Pacific arbitrage window remained closed, with freight costs for a 10,000-tonne shipment standing at $105-110/tonne.

Asian demand for both IX and PX is expected to remain through the first half of the year on new purified terephthalic acid (PTA) start-ups in China, market participants said.

With additional reporting from Blanca Venegas and Helena Strathearn

($1 = €0.78)

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By: Bohan Loh
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