Europe SAN buyers targeting reductions for April

02 April 2013 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--European styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) buyers are targeting initial reductions of €30-50/tonne ($38-64/tonne) for April contract business because of lower feedstock costs, market sources said on Tuesday.

The April styrene contract price has been confirmed at a reduction of €64/tonne, and most SAN players expect a fall in the April acrylonitrile (ACN) contract price after propylene settled at €50/tonne down from March.

“We will target €40/tonne down as a preliminary price, but we have to give the suppliers more time,” a buyer said, referring to some players being absent from the market because of extended Easter holidays.

“We have not yet got any firm proposals [from suppliers] due to Easter. We will try to move down at a minimum with monomer,” a second buyer said.

On the sell side, one producer said it will look to pass on some of the feedstock cost reductions, but it also needs to continue to strengthen its margins.

Views on demand were varied depending on the source.

“Demand has been very good throughout [the first quarter], outlook for April looks good as well so far,” the producer said.

Buyers see demand levels as more stable.

“Demand was not so bad for the last month. A bit like clockwork,” a buyer said, referring to the relatively consistent levels of demand it has seen to date in 2013.

Price negotiations will get fully underway next week once all market participants are back from holiday.

SAN is used in household and sanitary applications, office articles, cosmetic packaging, transparent covers, lighters, and battery housings.

($1 = €0.78)

By: Matt Tudball
+44 208 652 3214

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