Producers seek 15 cent/lb hike for US Feb MIBK on feedstock

22 January 2013 23:34  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) contract prices for February have been proposed higher by 15 cents/lb ($331/tonne, €248/tonne), sources confirmed on Tuesday.

The steep February price-hike efforts were attributed to higher feedstock, including acetone, isopropanol (IPA) and spot refinery-grade propylene (RGP) values.

In the meantime, January MIBK prices settled flat from December at $1.13-1.23/lb, as assessed by ICIS. No price-hike initiatives or price weakness surfaced for January, sources said.

Supply remained snug for most market players, but upstream pressure was cited as the primary driver, especially because demand has yet to rebound after the end of 2012.

Refinery-grade propylene (RGP) was up late in the previous week at 69.00 cents/lb versus 64.00-66.50 cents/lb a week earlier, continuing to rise on tighter supply and firm demand.

US propylene contracts rose by 15 cents/lb for January, lifted by strong demand and a surge in spot prices in recent weeks.

On the US truck acetone front, January contract prices moved higher by 5 cents/lb on feedstock costs and tight supply.

US isopropanol (IPA) contracts for January increased last week by 10 cents/lb on upstream pressure from chemical-grade propylene (CGP), and most producers have announced plans to increase contract values by another 5 cents/lb, effective on 1 February.

US MIBK suppliers include Sasol, Haltermann, Celanese and Dow Chemical.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Larry Terry
1 713 525 2653

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