18 April 2013 15:38 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON( ICIS)--European naphtha prices are holding steady this week after registering a fall of more than $100/tonne (€77/tonne) since mid-March, and dropping below $800/tonne last Friday, industry sources said on Thursday.
Naphtha CIF (cost, insurance & freight) NWE (northwest Europe) prices dropped by 13% – or $113/tonne – from 18 March to 16 April, ICIS data shows.
Prices are now comparatively stable, and mostly moving in the $780s/tonne, sources said.
"After the correction, prices are now stable," a trader said.
Nevertheless, industry sources maintain naphtha prices could fall in the coming days.
Petrochemical demand is decreasing due to the heavy cracker turnaround schedule in Europe, a second trader said.
A naphtha buyer said: "Demand is slow, getting lower by the day. [Liquefied petroleum gas] is going to be more and more in demand [as a petrochemical feedstock], as its heating demand will fall in summer."
The main application of naphtha is in the petrochemical production of olefins. Naphtha is also used as a feedstock for gasoline blending.
($1 = €0.77)
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