UpdateAsia naphtha falls below $1,000/tonne on weak petchem demand

13 September 2012 10:57  [Source: ICIS news]

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SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Asia’s open-spec naphtha prices fell below $1,000/tonne to a two-week low on Thursday, undermined by concerns over weakening petrochemical demand, traders said.

The second-half October naphtha contract lost $18.50/tonne (€14.43/tonne) from Wednesday to $995-997/tonne CFR Japan, according to ICIS data.

Naphtha had slid to the weakest levels since 31 August, ICIS data showed.

“Naphtha came off hard today,” said a trader.

In physical trading, Glencore sold an open-spec naphtha cargo to Marubeni at $990/tonne for delivery in the first half of November, traders said.

The naphtha crack spread for second-half October fell by 10.9% from Wednesday to $127.80/tonne on Thursday – the lowest since 29 August when the crack spread stood at $123.33/tonne, according to ICIS data.

The intermonth spread between the second-half October and the second-half November contracts on Thursday weakened to its lowest level since 3 September, at $12/tonne in backwardation, the data showed.

The backwardation was at $13.50/tonne on Wednesday, according to the data.

“The end-users are getting bearish on demand,” one trader said.

 ($1 = €0.78)

By: Felicia Loo

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