HOUSTON--US SBR contract prices for October fell slightly, tracking a slight decrease in upstream BD contract prices for October.
US October 1502 non-oil grade SBR contract prices were assessed 96.4-103.4 cents/lb ($2,125-2,280/tonne), down from 96.9-103.9 cents/lb in September.
US BD October contract prices fell by 0.3% amid improved supply. BD is the larger portion of SBR feedstocks and is a significant driver of SBR pricing.
In recent months, BD costs have kept SBR contract prices elevated despite downward pressure from available imports and sluggish summer demand. The pressure from imports, along with a seasonal summer slowdown for tyre production, has kept spot prices well below contract levels in recent weeks.
Pressure from available imports continues amid lower upstream costs in Asia and a national Chinese holiday, which has slowed demand.
Domestic demand began to pick up in September ahead of the winter driving season. Additionally, a year-on-year increase in vehicle sales for August could benefit the downstream tyre sector.
Major North American SBR producers include Dynasol, Goodyear Tire & Rubber and Lion Elastomers.