European PS sellers seek increases for June
In addition to firmer styrene contracts, some players cited supply concerns stemming from an extended force majeure at Total’s PS plants at Carling and Gonfreville as the other reason behind regional sellers’ higher prices.
According to a statement on the company’s site, Styrolution issued an increase of €80/ton on their PS prices in Europe effective as of June 1. Another European supplier, Trinseo also announced increases of €70/ton on their June PS prices when compared to May. Meanwhile, both producers implemented hikes on their new ABS prices as well.
Distributors in the region wrapped up their May deals with mostly rollovers or slight increases from April while they were yet to reveal their new June prices by the time of press.
An end product manufacturer in Belgium reported completing his May purchases with rollovers from April and commented, “We think that the June outlook is bullish, supported by higher crude oil costs as well as concerns about a decrease in availability due to the strikes at French refineries. However, weaker styrene costs in Asia may exert pressure on Europe over the middle term.” Another converter added, “Our suppliers stepped back on their initial May prices and we concluded our PS purchases with rollovers from April. For June, we expect a firm outlook on the back of the higher styrene settlements.”
A distributor operating in Belgium opined, “We wrapped up our May deals with mostly rollovers from April after approaching the market with higher prices as demand was disappointing during May. We feel that the market is now more or less balanced and the ongoing strikes in France are not affecting the polymer markets significantly for now.”
In Turkey, initial June PS prices from Europe also started to surface with visible increases when compared to May. An agent of a West European PS producer reported that they received €80/ton hikes from their supplier for June. “We are not planning to be active in the market until we hear new prices from other regional suppliers. We hope to conclude some sales in the days to come if the euro/dollar parity becomes more favorable for us,” he stated.
Meanwhile, in the upstream markets, spot styrene prices in Europe shed some ground towards the end of this week following Trinseo’s restart of their Bohlen styrene unit in Germany after completing a planned maintenance.
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