07 June 2013 09:57 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Europe June toluene contracts have been confirmed at $1,130.00-1,137.50/tonne, down $22.50-25.00/tonne from last month’s contract range, sources said on Friday.
One major consumer said it had agreed its first June contract at $1,137.50/tonne FOB (free on board) NWE (northwest Europe), or €864.50/tonne, while a producer confirmed it had settled June volumes at $1,132.50/tonne.
Another buyer later confirmed it had settled June contracts within the $1,130.00-1,132.50/tonne range, and one producer on Friday morning confirmed it had settled June volumes “within the above range.”
Spot activity was quiet throughout May, with prices notionally assessed around the mid-$1,100s/tonne, before crude futures saw a sharp drop towards the end of the month.
One aromatics trader commented that several buyers were disappointed this month, as they were expecting a lower price.
European spot offers have been at $1,140-1,150/tonne FOB Rotterdam this week, but there were no firm corresponding bids.
With the US toluene market now trading around the $3.75/gal level, European prices would have to move significantly below $1,100/tonne to make viable any arbitrage from Europe to the US Gulf region.
“Buyers are covered through contractual material,” said one source. “There is no incentive for them to be active on the spot market.”
With gasoline prices still hovering around the $950-960/tonne FOB level this week, there is no demand for toluene coming from the blending sector either.
($1 = €0.76)
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