Asia ABS stays below $2,000/tonne despite rising SM values

10 October 2012 09:16  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Asia’s acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) resin prices remained below $2,000/tonne (€1,560/tonne) this week despite strong values of feedstock styrene monomer (SM), as downstream demand remained weak, market sources said on Wednesday.

ABS suppliers are quoting offers this week at $2,000/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Asia and above but actual deals remained below this level, they said.

Prices of feedstock SM for November shipment, on the other hand, rose above $1,550/tonne CFR China this week from around $1,500/tonne CFR China last week because of tight availability.

“Suppliers [of ABS] have quoted at $2,000-2,030/tonne CFR but there are no buying interests at this level,” said a trader in southeast Asia.

Sporadic deals for prompt ABS cargoes were heard this week at around $1,950/tonne CFR China and below.

“Spot prices are still below $2,000/tonne CFR China as buyers are unhurried,” said a trader in Hong Kong.

ABS buyers are resisting higher prices given recent declines in the prices of other feedstocks butadiene (BD) and acrylonitrile (ACN).

On 5 October, BD prices were assessed at $1,900/tonne CFR NE Asia, while ACN stood at $1,850/tonne CFR NE Asia, according to ICIS.

While market players in the key China market have returned after a week-long absence, trading activity has remained slow as the seasonal increase in production for exports in the country had ended, market sources said.

As the market enters its traditional lull season, ABS demand is expected to wane further.

ABS is a plastic used in the making of appliances, consumer electronics, office equipment, toys as well as the automotive and construction sectors.

($1 = €0.78)

By: Clive Ong
+65 6780 4359

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