18 September 2012 21:00 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--Mexico expandable polystyrene (EPS) producer Polioles announced a price increase of 4 cents/lb ($88/tonne, €67/tonne) for 1 October, based on rising feedstock costs, sources said on Tuesday.
"The combination of price increases of benzene, ethylene and natural gas are impacting the cost of styrene monomer, a key feedstock used in the production of expandable polystyrene," the company said in a 17 September customer letter obtained by ICIS.
It was not clear whether a second Mexican EPS producer, Polidesa, would follow with its own price increase announcement. However, no US producer was heard to have announced an October price increase, sources said.
Buyers in both the US and Mexico had been expecting prices to fall in September after a drop in feedstock benzene contract prices, but so far, that has not happened.
"They are holding their ground," said one buyer. "Last week benzene [spot] went up and so did styrene, and so they are holding everything flat."
Benzene spot prices started the week higher, with offers as high as $4.56 cents/gal on Monday, following higher crude oil prices and global supply tightness.
US producers said they are keeping an eye on feedstocks and may have to nominate their own October price increases in the coming weeks.
Mexico EPS spot prices were assessed by ICIS at 115-119 cents/lb DEL (delivered) for block material and 111-115 cents/lb DEL for package material.
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