Europe HDPE pipe prices down in line with wider PE market

14 June 2012 23:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--European June high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe prices are settling down by €150/tonne ($190/tonne) from May, in line with pricing in the wider polyethylene (PE) market, but deeper than the €120/tonne reduction in the June ethylene contract price, sources said on Thursday.

“We haven’t concluded all our monthly business yet,” said a buyer, “but that’s where offers are coming in [€150/tonne below May].”

Prices are assessed at €1,385-1,400/tonne FD (free delivered) Europe, on a gross basis.

Demand in the first few days of June was fairly active, but converters still only buy on a hand-to-mouth basis and they expect yet lower prices in July. A substantial reduction is widely expected in the July ethylene contract price, and any upstream reduction is likely to be transferred onto the HDPE pipe market.

Demand throughout Europe has been patchy and largely in line with the region's economic situation. Southern European demand tends to be soft, according to sellers, while other areas remain reasonable.

Expectations of lower prices in July are based on a slump in upstream naphtha prices. On Thursday morning, naphtha was trading at a low of $714/tonne CIF NWE. In April, the average price of the month was well above $1,000/tonne CIF NWE.

HDPE pipe is used widely in the construction sector.

($1 = €0.79)

By: Linda Naylor
+44 20 8652 3214

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