HOUSTON (ICIS)--US butadiene (BD) spot prices continued weakening amid soft demand, after tracking a drop in contract prices in the prior week.
US spot BD was assessed on Friday at 56.25-59.25 cents/lb ($1,240-1,306/tonne), compared with 59.00-59.25 cents/lb in the previous week.
US November BD contract prices had fallen by 16% from the prior month amid downward pressure from lower prices in Asia.
BD spot prices are facing additional downward pressure from seasonal factors, as most downstream sectors tend to slow during colder weather. The lower BD costs may spur some inventory build-up, but the approaching year-end and the possibility of derivative imports could limit this.
The styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) and acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) markets already have had downward pressure from available imports in recent months. Recent low demand in Asia and low BD costs could result in an increase of import availability in the coming months.
Major US BD producers include ExxonMobil, LyondellBasell, Shell Chemical and TPC Group.