30 July 2012 19:08 [Source: ICIS news]
Ethylene margins were assessed at 36.84 cents/lb ($812/tonne, €658/tonne), using ethane as a feedstock, up from 35.53 cents/lb in the week that ended on 20 July.
The increase followed a drop in the price of ethane, which ended Friday at 38 cents/gal, dropping by 7.3% from 41 cents/gal a week earlier.
An average gain of nearly 1% in the price of spot ethylene also helped fuel margins.
Ethylene for July traded last week at 48.750-49.375 cents/lb, rising from 47.500-49.750 cents/lb a week earlier.
The increase came after news that Flint Hills Resources (FHR) had shut down its Port Arthur cracker in Texas to repair a steam leak.
The 621,000 tonne/year cracker is expected to be restarted later this week, a market source said.
The information could not be confirmed with FHR because the company does not comment on its operations.
Ethylene for July was bid on Monday at 47.50 cents/lb against a 49.50 cent/lb offer.
September ethylene traded at 48 cents/lb earlier in the day.
Meanwhile, Mont Belvieu ethane prices dropped to 37.50 cents/gal, likely reflecting lower crude oil futures.
($1 = €0.81)
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