SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Toluene stocks in Jiangsu, the largest market for the material in China, fell to a seven-month low this week as import volumes dwindled, market players said on Thursday.
Jiangsu’s toluene inventories stood at 92,100 tonnes on Thursday, down 7% from the previous week, according to ICIS China.
Stock levels began falling from 10 July, with the cumulative decline to date pegged at 25,900 tonnes or 22%, ICIS China reported.
In July, about 50,000 tonnes of toluene imports arrived the Chinese shores – the lowest monthly volume recorded since October 2013, traders said.
For August, only 10,000-20,000 tonnes of imports are estimated to arrive in the country, they said.
“Even though import volumes are low, consumption is below average too,” a Chinese trader said.
Consumption for the week of 7 August was at 9,000 tonnes, ICIS China reported.
Going forward, market players estimate toluene inventories to slip further for the rest of August, especially if consumption picks up.
“Looking at the current rate of import arrivals and consumption, the inventories by end of August may just be 80,000 tonnes,” a Singapore-based trader said.
Additional reporting by Jenny Yi and Vika Wei