17 January 2013 19:50 [Source: ICB]
The European cyclohexane (CX) first-quarter delta contract has been agreed at €143/tonne ($186/tonne), a rollover from the fourth quarter of 2012, buyers and sellers confirmed on 10 January. The rollover was the result of weak demand counterbalancing high energy costs.
The CX delta settlement yields a January CX contract price of €1,296/tonne ex-works NWE (northwest Europe). The monthly CX contract price is derived from the sum of the CX quarterly delta contract price and the monthly benzene contract price.
The January benzene contract price was settled at €1,153/tonne FOB (free on board) NWE, an increase of €69/tonne compared with December.
Buyers had initially targeted a reduction in the quarterly delta contract price because of low consumption levels, but agreed to a rollover as a compromise.
"At at the beginning we were in a position to ask for a rebate because of weak demand, but in the end it was a rollover. Hydrogen [prices are] probably slightly better for the supplier than the preceding quarter, but the difference is very thin," a buyer involved in the settlement said.
The downstream polyamide chain has yet to see any restocking in 2013. Downstream inventories were rationalised in December to lower working capital on year-end balance sheets.
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