Corrected: Europe PET price unlikely to move much in June/July - buyers

30 May 2013 12:38  [Source: ICIS news]

Correction: In the ICIS story headlined “Europe PET price unlikely to move much in June/July - buyers” dated 30 May 2013, please read in the tenth paragraph … which was valued at €1,130/tonne in August 2012 and €1,120/tonne in May … instead of … which was valued at €1,120/tonne in August 2012 and €1,130/tonne in May ... A corrected story follows.

LONDON (ICIS)--The price of European polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is unlikely to change much over June and July, although players' ideas differ as to direction, sources said on Thursday.

"My gut feeling for July…I don't see prices coming down; we may well see them nudging up," according to a buyer.

Justification for a slight increase in July includes the possibility that European production costs may increase.

For now, activity is taking place between €1,220-1,260/tonne (1,584-1,636/tonne) FD (free delivered) Europe, with limited business recorded above this.

The summer months normally see higher sales of PET bottles, too. The weather has been unseasonably cold in many parts of Europe, and this, coupled with the economic malaise, has dampened demand for PET applications.

"There are many arguments as to why to go down [in price]. Why should [prices] go up?," a second buyer countered.

Higher production costs should not automatically mean an increase in the price of PET when it is not supported by healthy demand, the second buyer added.

The textile season in Asia, the dominant market, will be drawing to a close over the summer, so the price of raw materials paraxylene (PX) and purified terephthalic acid (PTA) may decrease, sources said.

Considering the crisis that the PET market is in, whereby new plant startups are occurring amid plant consolidation, prices have maintained relative stability.

Since August 2012, average prices have fluctuated between €1,245-1,320/tonne. This is in line with the major feedstock, PX, which was valued at €1,130/tonne in August 2012 and €1,120/tonne in May.

"There is a strange stability…the PET market has gone too long without peaks up or down. The market is so weak that the [PET] price would have gone down had it not been supported by the PX price," a third buyer noted.

This trend may well be maintained through the year, he added.

Dashboard price history

($1 = €0.77)

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By: Caroline Murray
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