US June MMA contract prices set to fall by 9 cents/lb on acetone

08 June 2012 17:02  [Source: ICIS news]

US June MMA contract prices set to fall by 9 cents/lb on acetoneHOUSTON (ICIS)--US June methyl methacrylate (MMA) contract prices are expected to drop by 7.1% on a steep drop in feedstock acetone prices, sources said on Friday.

Buyers and sellers said they expect June MMA contract prices will fall by 9 cents/lb ($198/tonne, €156/tonne), and some sources said settlements have been reached.

“If you look at the fall in the acetone contract, you’d expect MMA to fall by 10 cents or so,” a buyer said.

A producer said most of its contracts were being done at $1.15-1.21/lb FD (free delivered), down from May's levels of $1.24-1.30/lb, as assessed by ICIS.

The biggest reason for the fall is the 15.5 cent/lb drop in May barge acetone, which is the key feedstock for MMA.

Sources said the supply-demand situation for MMA is balanced, with most buyers satisfied with contract volumes and little interest in domestic spot material.

Spot prices for MMA into Latin America are mostly flat with US contract prices, a seller said.

One major producer is experiencing some minor production issues, buyers said, relating to its capacity expansion efforts, but a source said this has made the market only slightly snug.

Demand is strong, particularly from the coatings market, although some buyers said it is starting to drop off.

A producer said that year-on-year sales growth has been in the higher double-digits, and is expected to remain that way throughout the summer.

Major US MMA producers include Dow Chemical, Evonik and Lucite.

($1 = €0.79)

By: John Dietrich

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