Asia benzene falls $70-75/tonne to six-month low as crude tumbles

04 June 2012 04:59  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Benzene prices in Asia plunged $70-75/tonne (57-61/tonne) on Monday morning, falling below $1,000/tonne to a six-month low, tracking sharp falls in crude futures, traders said.

Prices were assessed at $980-990/tonne FOB (free on board) Korea – the lowest level seen since 2 December 2011, according to ICIS.

At 11:56 Singapore time (05:56 GMT), US crude futures for July delivery were down $1.20/bbl at $82.02/bbl, while Brent crude was down $1.11/bbl at $97.32/bbl.

Bids for July-loading benzene were heard at $960-970/tonne FOB Korea, while offers were limited, while bids for August loading cargoes were cited at $940-955/tonne FOB Korea.

The benzene market may not have seen the bottom yet, and any further downside depends on crude and naphtha futures, said a Singapore-based trader.

Benzene prices have shed $200-205/tonne, representing a 17% decline, from 1 May, according to ICIS.

($1 = €0.81)

By: Mahua Chakravarty
+65 6780 4359

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