07 September 2012 17:09 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--US September cumene contract prices are expected to fall by 5-7% because of lower feedstock costs, sources said on Friday.
The August contract was assessed by ICIS at 56-58 cents/lb FOB (free on board).
Most of the drop is coming from feedstock benzene, which came off a record contract high in August and shed 40 cents/gal, which translates to 5.43 cents/lb.
Additionally, refinery-grade propylene (RGP), the other cumene feedstock, has experienced steady pricing at low levels.
“It’s all tied to the feedstocks,” a cumene producer said. “When they go down, prices go down.”
The producer added that contract margins over feedstock costs have been largely steady in the third quarter, as supply remains steady and demand is slightly softer.
The weakness in demand stems from a lack of export opportunities of cumene’s key downstream product, phenol.
US spot phenol prices have been too high to move material into
Now that benzene has come off its record high, sources said exports into
Additionally, phenol demand in
($1 = €0.79)
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