US spot ethylene prices rise 14% in the past two weeks

24 August 2012 20:51  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US spot ethylene prices have gained 14% in the past two weeks, tracking a short-term boost to demand, sources said on Friday.

US spot ethylene prices ended Friday at 55.00-57.75 cents/lb ($1,213-1,273/tonne, €970-1,018/tonne), up from the range of 48.5-50.0 cents/lb seen for the week ended 10 August, according to ICIS.

Sources attributed much of the increase in prices to a surge in demand from the downstream polyvinyl chloride (PVC) market.

“PVC demand is better this month than last month,” a producer said. “Export demand is up as well.”

However, the producer said that much of the demand can be attributed to buyers trying to get ahead of an impending price increase.

Other sources said the increase in ethylene demand is coming from its biggest downstream product, polyethylene (PE).

However, some sources said end-use demand for the resin is weak. Instead, the rise in demand reflects PE producers looking to replenish their inventories after draw downs in June and July.

($1 = €0.80)

By: John Dietrich

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