AFPM ’12: US cumene spot prices have room to move higher

03 April 2012 17:23  [Source: ICIS news]

SAN ANTIONIO, Texas (ICIS)--US cumene spot prices have room to move higher on stable demand and tighter supply, sources said on the sidelines of the International Petrochemical Conference (IPC).

Currently, March US cumene contract prices are assessed by ICIS at 65-67 cents/lb ($1,433-1,477/tonne, €1,075-1,108/tonne) FOB (free on board).

According to buyers and sellers, this represents an average premium of 2 cents/lb more than feedstock costs.

Spot cumene was being done at a level 2.0-2.5 cents/lb above feedstock costs in March. Moving into April and May, spot parcels are likely to be done at a premium of 3.0-4.0 cents/lb above feedstock costs.

“There could be a bit of a premium on cumene going forward, especially if supply tightens,” a seller said.

Most sources expect Sunoco’s 545,000 tonne/year Philadelphia cumene plant in Pennsylvania will be permanently shut down in June.

Major US cumene producers include CITGO, Flint Hills Resources, Georgia Gulf, Marathon, Shell Chemical and Sunoco.

Hosted by the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), the IPC continues through Tuesday.

($1 = €0.75)

By: John Dietrich

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