Europe etac prices edge down on poor demand, strong competition

12 April 2013 17:43  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Europe ethyl acetate spot prices edged down as a result of lacklustre requirements, plentiful supplies in Europe and strong competition from importers, sources said on Friday.

The recent settlement of the April ethylene contract price at €1,265/tonne, down €60/tonne from March, also led to some purchasers expecting lower offers.

The etac price range was assessed by ICIS at €880-920/tonne FD NWE, down by €10/tonne ($13/tonne).

However, with margins already under pressure, some etac producers have been resisting the downward pressure. Many argue that etac prices do not necessarily track ethylene values. 

Last week a producer said: “April [etac prices] should be a rollover, nothing has changed but ethylene [price], and that doesn’t change etac [prices] too much. Feedstock prices are not having a direct impact on etac prices, but customers are trying to push for lower numbers.”

This week some participants have had to accept decreases.

“We went down €20/tonne from March,” a seller said. “We underbid the competition. We had to do something. We [initially] tried to preserve a bit of margins, but they're very eroded.”

A distributor said: “It’s a flat market, Indian producers [significant imports from India are entering Europe], high feedstock costs, the automotive sector is still bad. There's too much etac. We tried to rollover [prices], but there is pressure, we’re down €10/tonne.”

($1 = €0.76)

By: Jo Pitches
+44 208 652 3214

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