LONDON (ICIS)--Some first-quarter contract negotiations have been reported reaching a conclusion in the European fatty alcohols market, sources said on Wednesday.
From the first-quarter business concluded so far, mid-cut fatty alcohol contracts were reported at €1,380-1,470/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe).
With many buyers still opting to hold back from making purchases, negotiations on the most part have been progressing slowly.
A significant number of buyers believe the additional fatty alcohol volumes being made available to the market will soon exert downward pressure on prices, although this has yet been seen.
Although suppliers had initially tried to push for increases earlier during the quarter, resistance among buyers has since led to a lowering of offers, and therefore concluded business.
Producers remain opposed to a further lowering of prices, however.
“It’s unrealistic of buyers to expect even lower prices, with feedstock costs at their current level,” one producer said.
He added he would consider not selling into the market if margins were squeezed any further.
Sources for now remain unsure over the full impacts of the Asian import duties on European pricing, leading to expectations of stable pricing leading into February.