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Majority of Europe Q3 acetic acid contract prices roll over

ICIS News : 4-Oct-13 23:59

LONDON (ICIS)--European acetic acid Q3 contract prices were assessed by ICIS on Friday at €445-525/tonne ($610-719/tonne), representing a rollover from the second quarter.

The contracts were concluded on a free delivered (FD) northwest Europe (NWE) basis.

While most contract prices fell within the assessed range, numbers above and below this range were also indicated.

A slight decrease was seen on monthly contract prices over the period. Methanol contract prices were rolled over for the third quarter.

In nearly all cases, Q3 contract price outcomes for acetic acid were heard at a rollover, based on largely stable market fundamentals. Some increases of €5-10/tonne were noted by one supplier.

Some October contracts remain under negotiation, but a producer said it has concluded all of its prices at an increase of €10/tonne, reflecting a rise in methanol costs.

Spot prices increased by the same amount, the source noted. A second producer is targeting plus €10-20/tonne for its October contracts on reduced availability and higher Asian export prices.

One buyer said it has agreed price increases of €10-15/tonne for its fourth-quarter contracts. The Q4 methanol contract price was settled at an increase of €18/tonne from the third quarter, representing a cost increase for acetic acid producers of approximately €10/tonne.

A second buyer said that availability is good and demand is stable, although a prolonged outage at Azot Severodonetsk’s plant in Ukraine would have an impact on supply that would not be confined to eastern Europe. The source acknowledged that acetic acid production margins in Europe are unsustainably narrow.

A third buyer said that spot prices have risen by €10-25/tonne and are in the low-€400s/tonne delivered for bulk volumes. Suppliers are keen to sell spot tonnes for delivery during the fourth quarter, the buyer added.

In contrast, a fourth buyer said that some suppliers had no material available to sell on the spot market for delivery during the fourth quarter. The source confirmed that prices for bulk parcels are close to €400/tonne delivered.

Spot prices for truck deliveries were assessed up by €10/tonne at the low end in the range of €470-500/tonne FD NWE.

($1 = €0.73)

By Samuel Weatherlake
+44 20 8652 3214

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