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New N America Q2 TiO2 initiative also unlikely to succeed - buyers

ICIS News : 22-Feb-13 20:55

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Huntsman’s plan to increase North American second-quarter titanium dioxide (TiO2) prices has a “zero percent” chance of success, a buyer said on Friday.

The pigment maker’s 10 cent/lb ($220/tonne, €167/tonne) initiative, effective on 15 March, garnered equally negative reactions from other buyers, many of whom planned an identical price-hike effort earlier in the week from Kronos.

Although first-quarter decreases of 10-13 cents/lb have been heard, the quarterly range has not yet been settled. Prices remain at the fourth-quarter level of $1.55-1.70/lb, as assessed by ICIS.

“They are just trying to stop the bleeding,” another buyer said of the producers’ second-quarter increase initiatives. “If the market doesn’t change, they don’t stand a chance of getting an increase.”

Conditions remain extremely soft, sources said, including weak demand and an oversupply of pigment.

Other North American TiO2 producers include Tronox, DuPont and Cristal.

($1 = €0.76)

For more on TiO2, visit the ICIS Plants & Projects database

By Larry Terry
1 713 525 2653

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