US polyethylene terephthalate (PET) monthly negotiated prices for April were finally settled at a 1.0 cent/lb ($22/tonne) decline from March values, market sources said on 22 May.
A producer and buyer separately confirmed the settlement. US April PET prices were assessed by ICIS at 80.50-84.00 cents/lb SBM (stretch blow moulding) DEL (delivered), down from 81.50-85.00 cents/lb SBM DEL in March.
PET started to settle after the upstream paraxylene (PX) contract price for April was settled at a split late in the day on 16 May, market sources said.
The buyer also said that his PET cost plus (or formula-based) pricing for April PET declined by 1.3-1.4 cents/lb on the back of lower raw materials.
Settlements on April pricing took so long because market players were waiting for April PX contracts to be settled. May PET prices have not yet been settled as players now await a settlement in the May PX contract price. Some market players expect a rollover in PET in May from April.
Some market sources said that the weather is not cooperating as much as they would like, which is holding back demand for PET. US weather is still cool enough to dampen demand in the downstream beverages market, sources said. One participant said that market players are still hoping that June will be a true peak season, when the hot summer weather kicks in.
Converters are still waiting for major summer orders to come in. As a result, inventories are not up as expected.