US November acrylates contracts held to 1-2 cent/lb gains

14 November 2012 23:49  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US November acrylic acid and acrylate esters contract prices increased by 1-2 cents/lb ($220-441/tonne, €174-348/tonne), sources said on Wednesday, but the gains fell below nominated increase levels.

Buyers successfully pushed back against proposed increases of 6-8 cents/lb, arguing end-of-year destocking efforts, plentiful supply and only a small October feedstock chemical-grade propylene (CGP) increase of 1.50 cents/lb.

The November glacial acrylic acid contract range increased to $1.10-1.14/lb, as assessed by ICIS.

Most increases were at 2 cents/lb, with gains for butyl acrylate (butyl-A) and glacial acrylic acid (GAA) rising mainly 1 cent/lb.

If November CGP increases at or near 5 cents/lb, it could prompt December acrylates initiatives, but buyers are vowing that they will not accept any more increases before the end of the year.

The late-September explosion at Nippon Shokubai’s acrylates plant in Himeji, Japan, has had little effect on the domestic market, sources said.

“Buyers of Nippon Shokubai material were able to cover their needs in China,” a source said. “That helped bring some balance to the North American market but not enough to give sellers real pricing power.”

Among feedstock, November propylene contracts were still not settled, but several sources said agreements were likely to come in below nominated levels of 5 and 7 cents/lb.

In the feedstock US oxo-alcohols 2-ethylhexanol (2-EH) and n-butanol (NBA) markets, November prices were assessed up by 3 cents/lb for each product on steady demand.

NYMEX crude oil futures on Wednesday were up by $1.88/bbl, or 2.2%, from one week earlier, but by a smaller amount from the previous day after two down days in response to the dollar weakening against the euro.

US acrylates producers include Dow Chemical, Arkema and BASF.

($1 = €0.79)

For more on US acrylates, visit the ICIS Plants & Projects database

By: Larry Terry
1 713 525 2653

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