18 January 2012 20:52 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--SABIC Innovative Plastics on Wednesday proposed US price increases of 11 cents/lb ($243/tonne, €192/tonne) for its polycarbonate (PC) and PC-blended materials and 5 cents/lb for its acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) materials, for shipments made on or after 13 February.
SABIC had previously proposed a 5-cent/lb price increase for its ABS pipe and sheet materials that are used exclusively in the US, effective 1 February.
The company proposed the same increases for the rest of the world.
SABIC cited increasing costs for raw materials butadiene for ABS and benzene for PC as reason for the proposed price adjustments. The company's last price increase came in mid-2011.
Feedstock acrylonitrile (ACN) spot prices have increased recently on demand, while the December contract rates were down.
The January contract for styrene narrowed from December, but the average remained the same. The January contract for BD settled up by 8% from December, while spot prices were heard at 125–135 cents/lb for the week that ended on 13 January.
Additionally, there are several crackers scheduled for planned maintenance turnarounds in the first six months of the year. This could have a negative impact on the BD supply, sources said.
Upstream feedstocks costs for PC have been increasing as the January benzene contract rose 23% over the December contract, and spot prices have hovered around $4/gal.
Because of the surge in benzene costs, the US January phenol contract is expected to increase as well.
One buyer said he is leery of the push for price increases, adding he is not sure if they are warranted. The buyer said some of the increases appear to be in excess of the added cost.
The buyer also questioned the producers about why buyers seldom see large drops in price when feedstock costs fall as they have.
SABIC has three ABS production facilities in the US. The company has PC facilities in Japan, the Netherlands, Spain and two in the US.
Other ABS producers include BASF Mexicana, INEOS ABS, Network & Diamond Polymers, Styrolution and Styron, while other PC producers include, Bayer, Policarbonatos do Brasil and Styron.
($1 = €0.79)
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