US PP May contracts settle down 10 cents/lb with propylene

10 May 2012 22:56  [Source: ICIS news]

Polypropylene is used in the manufacture of food packaging and containersHOUSTON (ICIS)--US polypropylene (PP) contract prices fell by 10 cents/lb ($220/tonne, €168/tonne) in May, following an identical drop in feedstock propylene, sources said on Thursday.

US PP contract prices for May were at 78.50-80.50 cents/lb DEL (delivered) for homopolymer injection and raffia grade material, as assessed by ICIS.

Much of the PP market has a monomer-based contract that follows the monthly polymer grade propylene (PGP) cost. PGP prices fell to 67.50 cents/lb for May.

Suppliers said they hope the price drop will bring more demand back to the market. One supplier said it was seeing improved demand in May over April levels.

But brokers and distributors said they aren't seeing much of an impact on demand based on the 10 cent/lb drop.

"When we got the announcement, it was just a dull thud," said one broker. "The dime coming out just isn't making anybody do anything they were not going to do already."

Buyers said they do not plan to buy in significant quantities in May, because they expect prices to fall again in June.

There are plenty of discounted offers for spot material, sources said, adding that prices for generic prime homopolymer PP are around 71-72 cents/lb.

Major North American PP producers include LyondellBasell, ExxonMobil, INEOS, Total, Formosa Plastics, Braskem Americas, Pinnacle Polymers, Phillips 66 and Flint Hills Resources.

($1 = €0.77)

By: Michelle Klump
+1 713 525 2653

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