23 August 2013 22:44 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US benzene market appeared to be moving back into contango by the end of the trading day on Friday, according to market participants as the forward outlook for October appeared stronger again.
September/October bids were backwardated by 1 cent/gal ($22/tonne, €17/tonne) late Thursday and early Friday.
However, a few major benzene traders expected the backwardation for bids to be short-lived with October eventually moving above September prices.
US benzene supply has been long and readily available since January, while prompt benzene spot prices have been in contango with forward month spot levels.
However, prompt demand has been picking up in August as market participants make preparations ahead of upcoming turnarounds in September and October.
Current prompt benzene spot prices were at $4.39-4.40 FOB (free on board) for September, while October benzene spot prices were at $4.39-4.42/gal FOB.
The September and October bids were at parity, but the October offer was at 2 cents/gal over September offers.
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