Buyers oppose Styron's plans to raise ABS prices in Europe

09 May 2012 14:19  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) buyers in Europe said on Wednesday that they are resisting attempts by Styron Europe to raise prices for the product this month because of poor demand in their downstream markets.

"Demand has generally been softer since the middle of April,'' said one large buyer that has factories across Europe. "I don't expect to pay an increase this month."

Styron Europe announced earlier this week that it intends to seek higher prices for ABS, styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) and polystyrene (PS) in May to recover the higher cost of production.

Styrene monomer, a major component in SAN and ABS, became more expensive in May after its monthly customer reference price (CRP) settled at €1,355/tonne FCA (free carrier) Rotterdam, up by €30/tonne ($39/tonne) from the previous month, the seller involved confirmed last week.

Styron wants a €35/tonne increase for ABS and SAN in May, according to a statement on the company's website. It is also proposing a €50/tonne increase for PS.

''Our costs are coming from styrene monomer this month,'' a company source said on Wednesday.

Another ABS end-user said it had settled at a rollover with its European suppliers this month. 

"It was different this month, there wasn't too much fuss in the negotiations,'' said the buyer.

Another European ABS producer said last week that it had reduced rates at its ABS plant in northwest Europe in response to poorer demand in April. Switzerland-headquartered Styron is running its ABS plants at normal operating rates, the company source said on Wednesday.

Other European ABS suppliers that are seeking a €30/tonne increase for ABS this month have yet to achieve their targets. In the meantime, there are reports of Asian injection moulding and compounding ABS being offered for May shipment at lower levels compared with April. Prices were undisclosed.

($1 = €0.77)

by Renee Lawrence

By: Staff Reporter
+44 20 8652 3214

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