US ethylene prices up but wide bid/offer gap slows markets

11 July 2012 21:46  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US ethylene traded higher on Wednesday, but market activity was slow for most of the day as bid and offers grew wide apart.

Ethylene for July was transacted at 44.50 cents/lb ($981/tonne, €804/tonne) earlier in the day, rising on average by 4.6% from deals done at 42.375-42.750 cents/lb last week.

The increase surprised some in the market because this week marked the first time in 2012 that all US crackers are up and running at the same time.

US ethylene production was constrained in the past six month by a series of scheduled turnarounds and unplanned outages.

The deal on Wednesday puts front-month ethylene prices in July at an average of 43.00 cents/lb, slightly up from 42.94 cents/lb in June.

Ethylene for July was last heard bid at 44 cents/lb against a 47 cent/lb offer.

($1 = €0.82)

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By: William Lemos
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