03 February 2012 19:08 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--The European February styrene barge contract was confirmed on Friday at €1,334/tonne ($1,755/tonne), up by €120/tonne from the previous month in line with higher benzene and ethylene numbers.
The settlement was initially reached by one set of contract partners and was later followed by another buyer and seller pair.
A third pair of settling parties were unable to come to an agreement this month, citing concerns surrounding the sustainability of the level in light of current spot market values.
February spot styrene is currently valued at $1,390–1,415/tonne FOB (free on board) ?xml:namespace>
So far this year European styrene players have struggled with high benzene numbers pushing up production costs while demand has been slow to pick up in the first quarter.
According to one of the sellers involved in an agreement, the increase was purely feedstock driven.
Two parties seen in the market as buyers felt it was a number they could buy at and so acknowledged it as a publishable number.
Another major buyer also did not agree this number with its suppliers, arguing that it was a rise of contractual costs that did not reflect the low spot numbers or the falling spot benzene market, and therefore it said it was not a realistic market benchmark.?xml:namespace>
($1 = €0.76)
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