Acetone: European spot price rise; US export pricing stable; Asian price unchanged
May 13, 2015 -- Staff Reports
The European spot price of acetone added Eur40/mt on the week and was assessed at Eur800/mt FD NWE.
The spot market swiftly adjusted to Cepsa's force majeure declaration at its acetone production facility in Huelva, Spain.
The Huelva plant has a phenol capacity of 600,000 mt/year and an acetone capacity of 370,000 mt/year, according to Cepsa's website.
The company was not immediately available for official comment on May 12.
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"They've allocated their customers to 40-50% [regular volumes]," a European trade source said, pegging spot value at Eur840-Eur860/mt FD NWE.
A European trader held amore bullish sentiment, pointing out that Cepsa's FM declaration came on top of Borealis' shutdown in Porvoo, Finland.
"If you would have asked me last week I would have said the market is balanced to long, now it looks short," the trader said, pegging value above Eur900/mt FD NWE.
A third trade source was more bearish, reporting a trade at Eur775/mt FD NWE.
"There are offers from Poland on the low side...but there is also pressure of feedstocks," the third source said.
US export pricing for acetone was stable this week, assessed May 12 at $717-$739/mt (32.50-33.50 cents/lb) FOB USG, amid quiet demand, sources said.
There was some sentiment that acetone pricing could move higher during the end of May or beginning of June, a source said.
A couple of price increases around 3 cents were announced for the end of May, a source said.
Feedstock refinery-grade propylene prices rose 0.75 cent from a week ago, assessed at 31 cents/lb delivered May 12.
Refinery-grade propylene pricing was expected to stay around that level in the short-term amid oversupply, sources said.
Export price indications were heard in the low-30s cents/lb, sources said.
In the domestic market, price indications ranged from the low- to mid-40s cents/lb, sources said.
In contracts, the April MMA settled at 39.5 cents/lb, sources said.
Acetone contracts typically settle retroactively.
Acetone remained unchanged week on week, assessed at $695/mt CFR China and $735/mt CFR Southeast Asia May 12.
Traders expressed a willingness to sell at $700-$715/mt CFR China, while buying interest remained at $680-$690/mt CFR China.
The CFR Southeast Asia acetone marker was assessed flat tracking prices in China.
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