25 February 2013 23:48 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--US butadiene (BD) production in January totalled 256m lb (116,000 tonnes), rising more than 5.8% from 242m lb in December, consulting firm Jacobs Consultancy said on Monday.
Daily BD production in January rose nearly 5.4% to 8.24m lbs in Jaunary from 7.82m lbs December when output is measured on a daily rate, the group said in its monthly Hodson Report.
Production last month rose nearly 2% compared with 251m lb in January 2012.
US crackers operated at 93.3% of capacity in January, up from both 90.8% in December and 91.0% in January 2012, according to the report.
The increase in January was a result of a heavier feedslate due to increased naphtha usage and a reduction in ethane consumption, the report said. Among other factors, strong coproduct pricing improved the cash cost economics of the heavy feeds this month—the primary reason for the switch towards the heavier feedslate in January, the consultancy said.
US BD contracts in February rolled over from January, with the majority of the producers that participate in the monthly contract settlement keeping prices at 76 cents/lb. But according to market sources, prices for March will increase by 8 cents/lb to 84 cents/lb.
($1 = €0.76)
Reporting by Mark Yost
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