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EPS extends hefty gains into March driven by costs in Türkiye

by Merve Madakbaşı - mmadakbasi@chemorbis.com
  • 15/03/2024 (02:06)
Türkiye’s EPS markets sustained their rally for another month as soaring styrene prices on a monthly basis propelled prices further higher. Prices had turned up in February following a four-month bear run.

Ex-warehouse Türkiye – Local EPS prices– EPS Regular – EPS Non-Flammable – Styrene

Domestic offers surge by more than $200 this month

EPS offers reflected surging styrene costs over the last couple of months across the board along with supportive crude oil futures. Although spot styrene prices have witnessed downward corrections recently in Europe, they remained close to the $1500/ton FOB NWE threshold on a weekly average, as per ChemOrbis data. Moreover, steeply higher styrene contracts for March provided an upper hand to suppliers.

In March, domestic EPS prices were assessed $220/ton higher compared to the previous month at $1750-1800/ton for white regular and $1780-1830/ton for white non-flammable ex-warehouse equivalent Türkiye, not inc. VAT.

EPS grey follows suit, but demand remains slower than white

EPS black/grey prices for domestic cargos were up by $220-230/ton to be reported at $2200-2230/ton FD Türkiye, not inc. VAT. European EPS black was priced €280/ton ($307/ton) above last month €2080/ton ($2279/ton with recent parity) ex-warehouse Türkiye, not inc. VAT. “Sellers sought larger hikes than February to recoup margin losses occurred in the previous month,” a player commented.

A source from a domestic producer commented, “Demand has been better driven by upward pressure from costs. Nonetheless, we had to trim our initial price goals considering the Ramadan lull and uncertainties related to the nearing elections that keep purchases tied to needs on the side of manufacturers.” A trader added that buying interest for EPS white continued to fare better than black/grey grade for another month.

Players to monitor styrene’s trajectory

According to ChemOrbis Price Wizard, spot styrene prices in Europe have been seeing downward corrections over the past couple of weeks. The total drop from the mid-February peak has reached $110/ton whereas prices still indicated a $550/ton increase from the bottom in mid-December. Although seasonal factors may provide some support to the EPS market next month, rally may lose some steam if styrene costs continue to come down amid a huge premium over Asian prices for the monomer, according to some players.
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