30 January 2013 07:56 [Source: ICIS news]
BRISBANE (ICIS)--Negotiations for February caprolactam (capro) contracts in Asia may only be concluded after the Lunar New Year holiday amid a wide buy-sell gap in pricing ideas quoted by buyers and sellers, market sources said on Wednesday.
Producers’ offers were heard at $2,550-2,600/tonne (€1,887-1,924/tonne) CFR (cost & freight) northeast (NE) Asia, up by $100-120/tonne from January settlements.
Producers said they need to restore the squeezed margins resulted from the increase in upstream benzene prices.
January capro contracts in Asia were finalised $120/tonne higher month on month at $2,450-2,480/tonne CFR NE Asia, according to ICIS.
Key buyers, on the other hand, are not willing to commit to such prices, because of concerns that the downstream demand is weak as a result of the poor macroeconomic conditions that are limiting consumer purchasing power.
‘It is hard to negotiate as key buyers are considering a rollover or a modest increase of $50/tonne from January settlements at most,’’ said a seller.
Capro is an intermediate product that is primarily used in the production of nylon 6 fibres, plastics and other polymeric materials.
At midday, benzene prices were at $1,385-1,400/tonne FOB (free on board) Korea.
The key China market closes for the Lunar New Year holiday on 9-15 February.
($1 = €0.74)
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