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Damage Limitation

By John Richardson

POLYETHYLENE (PE) prices crept up by $10-50/tonne for the week ending 22 February, according to ICIS pricing.

But, as the above chart shows, integrated high-density PE variable cost margins in Southeast and Northeast Asia remained very weak, …

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China’s Numbers Game

By John Richardson

YET more problems with Chinese economic statistics have emerged, casting doubt over the idea that an economic hard landing was avoided in 2012 – and that there was a strong rebound in the fourth quarter.

“Official data …

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China Coal-To-Olefins Storm In A Teacup?

 

: Source: NRELC, China Coal Research Institute, HSBC estimates

 

By John Richardson

THERE has been a lot of interest in China’s coals-to-olefins (CTO) industry, with arguments that it is a very economically viable method of production.

On paper, there …

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US Housing Recovery 74% Below The Peak

By John Richardson

“People are tired of being depressed and looking for any little source of light to feel positive. Even companies are resorting to this and forecasting margin and earnings recovery though there is no strong data to show …

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HSBC: China 2013 Polyethylene Market Has Peaked

By John Richardson

A NEW report from HSBC backs up our concerns that the post-Chinese New Year polyethylene (PE) will be weaker than in December-January.

The bank is with us in thinking that the stronger markets over the last two …

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Filtering Out The Noise

By John Richardson

ONE should be careful about reading too much into the above margins for February as, of course, there was very little trading activity because of Chinese New Year (CNY), whilst oil and therefore naphtha prices increased.

But …

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Sinopec A Litmus Test For Reform

By John Richardson

CHINA’s new leaders are under increasing pressure to do something about the dreadful pollution that blights the lives of hundreds of millions of people.

One Shanghai resident told the blog, “The air quality is so bad here …

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US Housing Market – Real Recovery?

Source of picture: Rex Features

 

Today, we are running a guest blog post from Brian Spero,who is a financial contributor for the online resource, Money Crashers Personal Finance, where he writes about economic policy, real estate, and home improvement. …

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Consensus Confidence For 2013

By John Richardson

THE consensus view is that Chinese growth will be fine at the very least for the first half of this year, and possibly for the whole of 2013, thanks to all the money still sloshing around the …

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China Govt Confirms Post-CNY Labour Shortages

The great news behind rising labour costs: Shan Dalin, pictured with his family, is a crane operator from Southwest China’s Guizhou province who has worked in eastern Zhejiang province for 10 years. In 2012, Shan’s monthly income rose to 2,800 …

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