09 July 2013 17:08 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--A European styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) producer has concluded some price discussions at increases of €20-30/tonne ($26-38/tonne) for July domestic prices because of stable volumes this month, it said on Tuesday.
“We’ve settled some deals at plus €20-30/tonne so far, volumes look pretty steady for now in line with our plan which will mean we will be close to being sold out this month again,” the producer said.
There was no confirmation from the buy side of deals done at higher prices compared to June, but buyers said talks were on going with producers, some of which were pushing for higher July prices.
Demand in June and July has been relatively stable, with most producers fairly satisfied with demand levels given the weak economic environment.
“There has been stronger months for SAN in terms of demand…[but] it's a good time right now, the demand is there, moderate to good,” a second producer said.
Other producers have said they are targeting rollovers for July prices because of the small feedstock styrene contract price drop, preferring to see stability in the market rather than try and improve margins.
Some buyers said they had been offered rollovers from both European and Asian producers.
“No price decrease from Asia, [the Asian suppliers] already made very low prices in June,” a European buyer said, adding that Asian compounding grade SAN for August deliver was available for €1,550/tonne FD (free delivered) MED (Mediterranean).
Buyers also agreed that demand had been good in July, but some were already seeing the levels drop ahead of the European summer holiday period.
“At the beginning [of July] it was good enough, but now it's dropped. It's not so huge, a little bit calm,” one European buyer said of its current demand levels.
Current supply levels remain unaffected by Shell Chemicals’ force majeure on styrene, but one SAN producer said that: “we may expect some further tightness in [SAN] demand and further pressure on prices through this month if this acceleration [in styrene spot prices] continues”.
($1 = €0.78)
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