US aromatics steady to stronger ahead of Isaac's impact on US Gulf

27 August 2012 18:05  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US aromatics markets were quiet on Monday despite some reported shutdowns and a forecast that Tropical Storm Isaac could hit the US Gulf coast as a hurricane by mid-week.

Market activity was mostly held to trade discussions, as no fresh trades have been confirmed.

Trade sources said mixed xylene (MX) and toluene spot prices were moving higher, while benzene prices were stable.

Mixed xylene (MX) spot was bid at $3.99/gal FOB (free on board) for August and at $3.95/gal FOB for September, which was up from Friday’s prompt range of $3.85-4.00/gal.

Nitration-grade (n-grade) toluene prices were heard at $4.01-4.05/gal FOB on Friday, but trade sources said the market was stronger.

Benzene spot levels were stable at $4.19-4.25/gal FOB from the previous session.

One trade source said that benzene prices may have already been inflated, which may be why there was not much reaction in that market.

Although there have been some refinery and chemical shutdowns and productions are taking precautions ahead of Isaac, there have been no major aromatics production issues.

($1 = €0.80)

By: Brian Balboa
+1 713 525 2653

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