30 August 2013 17:50 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Metallocene-based linear low density polyethylene (MLLDPE) prices have increased by a minimum of €50/tonne ($66/tonne) in August, with some low-priced buyers paying hikes of up to €60/tonne, several said on Friday.
“It hasn’t been the best month to settle at the end,” said one buyer.
MLLDPE availability has tightened in recent weeks, on port congestion in the Middle East, and also better-than-expected demand and production cutbacks in Europe.
Buyers were surprised to be faced with hikes above the €40/tonne increase in the August ethylene contract, as availability had been long only weeks before.
A limited number of buyers have committed to bringing imports from South Korea at more advantageous prices than European levels. Traders are also looking into the possibility of imports but several said they could not get the keen prices that are on offer directly to converters.
MLLDPE prices have been supported by the tight linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) in general.
The focus of attention was now on September pricing, which was widely expected to rise on upstream increases. Very unusually at the end of the month, there was no ethylene contract settlement on Friday, but many polyethylene (PE) sources expected an increase of around €60-70/tonne for the September contract.
MLLDPE buyers expected to be faced with increases at least in line with any increase in the September ethylene contract.
Spot prices are still trading around the €1,400/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe) level.
($1 = €0.76)
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