Americas top stories - weekly summary

06 May 2013 15:00  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Here are some of the top stories from ICIS Americas for the week ended 3 May 2013.

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US April IPA contract falls 6 cents/lb on lower costs, demand
US isopropanol (IPA) contract values fell for April on pressure from softer feedstock and slack demand, sources confirmed on Monday.

US senator wants federal hearing on West Fertilizer explosion
Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works said Tuesday that she intends on holding a hearing very shortly on the West Fertilizer explosion and determine what gaps exist in the enforcement of chemical regulations and safety laws.

US April ethylene contracts set to fall on lower spot values
US April ethylene contracts appeared set for a decline, tracking weaker spot prices during the month, sources said on Wednesday.

Global trend toward S-SBR brings uncertainty to BD markets
Lanxess recently announced that it will shift production at its Triunfo, Brazil, plant from emulsion styrene butadiene rubber (E-SBR) used in conventional tyres to solution styrene butadiene rubber (S-SBR) used in high-performance green tyres. It's a trend playing out all over the world as more countries institute new tyre standards.

Three US producers announce price initiatives for caustic soda
US-based petrochemical producer Occidental has announced a $40/dst (dry short ton) increase for caustic soda, joining at least two other producers in raising prices, a company source confirmed on Thursday.

Natgas demand, LNG exports can benefit small businesses, jobs
Small businesses and employment in the US energy sector can benefit from increased natural gas demand from both domestic and international markets, as well as potential exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), a business organisation said on Thursday.

US PE contracts settle at a rollover for April
US April contract negotiations for polyethylene (PE) ended with a flat settlement after producers postponed a proposed 4 cent/lb ($88/tonne, €67/tonne) price increase until May, sources said on Thursday.

US adds 165,000 jobs in April, upwardly revises previous figures
The US economy showed new life in April, adding 165,000 jobs during the month, the Department of Labor said on Friday.

US spot ethylene prices hit lowest level since December 2012
US spot ethylene prices hit their lowest level in 15 weeks on the back of weak demand, sources said on Friday.

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