19 October 2012 23:59 [Source: ICIS news]
Compounding grade (natural) was assessed at €2,185-2,205/tonne ($2,838-2,864/tonne) FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe), injection moulding (natural) at €2,275-2,310/tonne FD NWE, and extrusion grade (natural) at €2,200-2,310/tonne FD NWE, according to ICIS.
One producer said it had passed a €20/tonne increase on September prices onto some of its customers, but there was no buyer confirmation to support this.
By contrast, a distributor said it had settled October contract business at a reduction of up to €50/tonne from September, but this was not confirmed on the seller side.
Quarterly contracts had an increase of €50-70/tonne for Q4 because of higher raw material costs in Q3.
Producers said they could not pass further increases though to the market because current subdued demand would not support a rise in prices. Drops in automotive production, and a general lack of consumer confidence across southern and western Europe because of weak macroeconomic conditions, has seen demand for ABS fall from September levels. Demand in October remains subdued but stable, market players said.
Minimal movements in October feedstock prices also helped buyers negotiate a rollover for October business.
Buyers are currently holding off making large purchases due to expectations that prices could fall further as producers look to reduce inventories before the end of the year.
The presence of Asian material in the European market continues to pressure producers to keep prices stable and remain competitive. A large volume of product is coming from South Korea as importers take advantage of the EU-South Korea Free Trade Agreement.
Supply is good, supported by Asian product, and consumers were able to buy material as and when needed.
($1 = €0.77)
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