Price and market trends: Europe June MDI contracts largely steady

13 June 2014 10:43 Source:ICIS Chemical Business

One producer said it had achieved rollovers and moderate rises after targeting a €70/tonne hike for MDI basic products

European June methyl di-p-phenylene isocyanate (MDI) contract prices have largely rolled over because of the lower upstream benzene settlement and a fairly balanced market, despite attempts to raise prices from at least one main producer, market players said on 4 June.

In addition, a number of MDI contracts, particularly for crude MDI, were fixed on a quarterly basis and these prices have rolled over into June which has led to a degree of general stability.

Crude MDI contract prices were steady in June at €2,070-2,130/tonne FD (free delivered) WE (western Europe), according to ICIS. There were some prices below the range from a few MDI buying sources, but these were for purchase rather than end-user price or net rather than gross values. The ICIS range refers to gross values only.

One manufacturer said it had achieved rollovers and moderate rises for June after targeting an increase of €70/tonne for MDI basic products to recoup lost margins from previous benzene increases and amid good MDI demand.

However, there was no other market confirmation to substantiate this and in fact other sellers said that increases were not possible because of sufficient supply and the lower benzene contract price.

By contrast, downward price adjustments for crude MDI were mentioned by a few sources, but this was not widely confirmed. One reselling source said it had achieved a decrease of €50/tonne for its purchase price for crude MDI in June but did not disclose what it had agreed for its end-user level.

One crude MDI buyer in the Mediterranean said it had secured a mix of rollovers and minor reductions in June, depending on supplier.

One supplier said it had mainly secured price rollovers for its crude MDI business in northwest Europe, but had conceded some price reductions in eastern Europe for certain accounts.

Another main manufacturer said the majority of its business was fixed for the quarter, adding that it had refused to accept any price reductions for its monthly MDI business.

Pure MDI prices have also remained largely stable into June at €2,260-2,330/tonne FD WE, according to ICIS.

By Heidi Finch