Americas top stories: weekly summary

ICIS Editorial

04-Dec-2023

HOUSTON (ICIS)–Here are the top stories from ICIS News from the week ended 1 December.

US natural R-HDPE prices return to 2022 premium over virgin
The premium between natural post-consumer recycled high density polyethylene (R-HDPE) resin and its virgin high density polyethylene (HDPE) counterpart has now fallen to levels not seen since this time last year, a trend that may incentivize demand.

Dow makes FID on Canada net-zero cracker project, construction to start next year
Dow’s board of directors has made a final investment decision (FID) to proceed with the “Path2Zero” cracker project at the company’s site in Fort Saskatchewan in Canada’s Alberta province, officials said on Tuesday.

US chemical volumes to rebound slightly in 2024 with destocking mostly over – ACC economist
US chemical volumes are poised to rebound modestly in 2024 as inventories are low and destocking is largely done across most value chains, said the chief economist of the American Chemistry Council (ACC).

US ethylene market long as crackers return from outages
The US ethylene market remains long with sufficient supply, weak demand and recent operating rates in the high 70% range. Several crackers have recently restarted which will add length to supply.

Brazil’s polymers players unfazed by import tariff hike, producers upbeat
Brazilian petrochemicals sources have said the slight hike in polymers’ import tariffs will have little overall impact, although it is expected to help shore up margins for domestic producers.

US base oils demand on track to hit 40-year lows with 19% decline in 2023 – ICIS
US base oils demand has plunged this year and is set to hit 40-year lows as the market responds to consistently elevated prices amid a relatively weak economy, ICIS experts said.

Argentina bracing for ‘very tough’ H1, but healthier growth could follow – Anastacio CEO
Argentina is to have a “very, very tough” first half of 2024 as President-elect Javier Milei implements a shock therapy for the beleaguered economy, but a healthier country should emerge from the trauma, said the CEO at Brazilian chemicals distributor Quimica Anastacio.

North America ICE car parc to decline very slowly through 2030 – ICIS economist
The North America car parc – the number of vehicles on the road – for internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles is expected to peak by 2025 and only decline slowly through 2030, supporting demand for lubricants, said an ICIS economist.

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