08 March 2013 03:15 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Asia’s spot benzene prices for May cargoes plunged to an 18-week low on Friday morning, falling below the $1,300/tonne (€988/tonne), following a weak performance in the US and European markets overnight, traders said.
Offers for May cargoes slipped to $1,295/tonne FOB (free on board) Korea, with bids now at $1,285-1,292/tonne FOB Korea, following two deals sealed at $1,300/tonne FOB Korea, they said.
Current prices represent a $45-50/tonne decline from Thursday’s close for May benzene at $1,335-1,345/tonne FOB Korea.
Ample stock levels in the US market and a closed arbitrage window from Asia to the US curtailed the country’s appetite for imports, market sources said.
“[The] US market seems long,” a Singapore-based trader said.
Discussions for April loading and the intermonth spread between April and May were limited in the morning session, traders and brokers said.
May is priced at a backwardation of about $25/tonne to April, they said.
On Thursday, April benzene prices were assessed at $1,360-1,370/tonne FOB Korea, according to ICIS.
($1 = €0.76)
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