11 January 2013 21:56 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--January contract prices for US polyvinyl chloride (PVC) rolled over in January from December as market participants weighed a new round of price initatives for February, sources said on Friday.
During the previous week, several US producers announced price increases of 3 cents/lb ($66/tonne, €50/tonne), while Westlake announced a more ambitious 5 cents/lb increase.
Producer Georgia Gulf had initially proposed its 3 cent/lb increase for January but later pushed it to February.
Pipe-grade PVC is assessed at 57-62 cents/lb, while general purpose PVC is assessed at 59-64 cents/lb.
Producers have cited the rising cost of feedstock ethylene as the primary reason for the increases. One producer also noted a seasonal uptick in demand in preparation for the start of the annual construction season.
One producer said it was confident that most of the proposed increases would be accepted by buyers. Manufacturers of piping and siding used in construction have also announced price initiatives, citing cost factors and increased demand, which the PVC producer said would lend support to the announced price initiatives.
A force majeure declared in late December by PPG Industries on vinyl chloride monomer, a precursor to PVC, was said to have had little impact on pricing. The force majeure at the Lake Charles facility in Louisiana also affected all grades of liquid caustic soda at the site.
Major US producers of PVC include Formosa, Georgia Gulf, OxyVinyls, Shintech and Westlake.
($1 = €0.75)
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