Europe PGE producers seek price rollover, despite softer feed costs

28 March 2013 23:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--While a clear picture for European propylene glycol ether (PGE) prices is yet to emerge following the April contract price settlement of feedstock propylene, some producers on Thursday indicated they will target a rollover.

On Thursday, the Europe April propylene contract was fully confirmed at €1,105/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe), down by €50/tonne from March.

“The C3 [propylene] settlement will have an effect. Can’t see the effect yet, though,” one producer said.

“We still have a rollover on PM [methoxy propanol], and on PMA [methoxy propanol acetate].”

A second producer said: “I don’t think the C3 price will impact much. From a producer’s standpoint, we’ve already been absorbing pressures. Margins are compressed.”

During recent months the PGE market has been facing relatively high feedstock costs, coupled with poor demand as a result of both seasonal and economic factors.

“It’s slow during winter,” the second producer added. “We’ve really tried to help our customers by absorbing the cost. It’s at a critical point now, though. There’s a steady creep on [feedstock] methanol [prices]. We’ve done our work. We don’t want to end up with really problematic margins. We’re aiming for a rollover into April.”

A clearer picture of pricing is expected to emerge as normal business resumes after the Easter holiday.

By: Jo Pitches
+44 208 652 3214

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