Relatively larger PP hikes obtained in West Europe than in Italy
Northwest Europe have achieved increases of €30-50/ton in deals in most cases while relatively smaller increases have materialized in Italy.
This was mainly due to comparatively better demand in Northwest Europe amidst supply concerns. A distributor reported selling West European material with €50/ton hikes. He commented, “We are receiving more inquiries from buyers this month given ongoing supply issues. It might be possible to see further hikes in the second half of the month as some producers decided to focus more on the export market, which will, as a result, lead to tighter supplies.”
A distributor offering on behalf of a different West European producer commented, “We sold some material with €40/ton increases. Even though larger increases were not easily accepted, the number of the orders we received have increased. Regular customers of the producers having force majeures have fallen back upon our stocks.”
Meanwhile, buyers in Italy secured some cargoes, paying increases of €20-40/ton. Sufficient supplies and regular demand were shown as the main reasons behind the buyers’ relative resistance to larger increases than €30-50/ton.
A distributor, who sold February quotas with €35/ton hikes over January, said, “Our supplier was initially asking for increases of up to €70/ton. Buyers are not struggling to find material despite limited availability. Thereby, we don’t expect larger increases to pass on deals in the second half of the month.”
Players have already started to voice March expectations as concerns over the recent drops in crude and naphtha prices might prevent further increases to materialize in the Italian market.
A converter reported, “We purchased only a few cargoes with €20/ton increases as we have enough stocks for now. The weaker energy complex and the US dollar might keep possible increases in check despite some planned and unplanned shutdowns.”
A different converter paid €40/ton increases for his regular purchases. He added, “We will purchase less material as we are entering into the low season. The outlook for March is foggy.”
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