For the most part, commodity resin prices were stable last month, though rising feedstock prices, some upticks in demand, and revival of exports indicate pressure building for higher prices. 

For the most part, commodity resin prices were stable last month, though rising feedstock prices, some upticks in demand, and revival of exports indicate pressure building for higher prices.

 

PE PRICES FLAT FOR NOW

Polyethylene prices were relatively stable though March, as suppliers pushed back their 5¢/lb price hikes from March to April. Meanwhile, the London Metal Exchange (LME) North American short-term futures contract in blown-film butene LLDPE for May was 38¢/lb, up slightly from April’s 37¢.

Contributing factors: Domestic demand is still down, but exports appear to be coming back to life. Also, ethylene monomer spot prices moved up to 23.25¢/lb early in April, having dropped to as low as 21.5¢ in mid- to late March. If spot monomer prices move as high as 27¢/lb, a PE price hike could result, says Mike Burns, global business director for PE at Resin Technology Inc., resin purchasing consultants, in Fort Worth, Texas.

 

PP PRICES TO MOVE UP?

Polypropylene prices were flat through March, and suppliers’ planned increases of 5¢ to 6¢/lb fell by the wayside. However, new hikes of 2¢ to 3¢ were issued for April. LME’s North American short-term futures contract in g-p injection-grade homopolymer was up to 37.2¢ for May from April’s 36.1¢/lb. Secondary market prices for PP resin dropped 2¢ to 4¢ and even more for wide-spec.

Contributing factors: April monomer spot prices appeared to be on the rebound, although April contract prices could remain flat or even soften a bit.

According to Scott Newell, RTI’s director of client services for PP, resin suppliers have been able to export a lot of their excess material, which has tightened up domestic supplies. “Polypropylene supply has tightened in the Far East and Europe and their prices have been going up. As a result, China and some European countries have been buying from North America.” Resin exports have also tightened domestic monomer supply. Demand for PP in the first quarter appears to have dropped at least 2-3%.

 

PVC APPEARS FLAT

PVC producers have gotten 2.5¢ to 3¢ out of 8¢/lb in price increases they have posted so far this spring. The announced 3¢ increase for April 1 does not appear to be in effect. OxyChem in mid-April told customers that April prices would be flat, but PVC in May would go up a whopping 5¢/lb. Flat ethylene monomer prices appears to be keeping PVC prices level. Window and siding demand in April picked up slightly.

 

PS PRODUCERS WANT 4¢ MORE

PS resin producers say they got their 3¢/lb increase in March, but in mid-April it was too soon to say whether they would get a 2¢ deferred increase as well. Americas Styrenics and Ineos both announced an additional 4¢ hike for Apr. 15, but Total made that date unlikely by posting its 4¢ hike for May 1.

Contributing factors: Rising benzene prices are behind the PS increases. Contract benzene for April was $1.69/gal, up from $1.29 in March. Every 10¢ increase in benzene translates into 1¢ higher cost for styrene monomer. Export demand for styrene is picking up in China. PS demand in packaging also grew slightly (5% to 10%) in April, though total PS sales through February were down 16.3%.

 

PET PRICES UP?

PET prices moved up 2¢ to 3¢/lb in March, a partial implementation of March increases of 5¢ to 7¢. This followed implementation of a 4¢ hike in February.

Contributing factors: Suppliers’ partial success in raising prices was spurred by hikes in paraxylene and ethylene glycol feedstocks and by improved resin demand—however slight—which is typical in the second quarter. Mike Dewsbury, global business director for RTI, says demand is up 2% to 3%, a far cry from the 6% to 7% gains of the last couple of years and the consistent annual double-digit demand growth of just a few years back. If StarPet starts its new 800- to 900-million-lb PET production line in June, rather than later in the year, overcapacity will put downward pressure on prices. In the fourth quarter, Indorama Polymers is scheduled to start up a 1-billion-lb plant in Decatur, Ala.

 

DOW HIKES POLYCARBONATE

Dow Chemical Co. said all polycarbonate resins, compounds, and blends would go up 7¢/lb on May 1. Dow sought counteract to six months of declining prices for PC and a 60% rise in benzene and 35% increase in propylene raw materials since January. 

 

Market Prices Effective Mid-Apr A

 
 
 RESIN GRADEb¢/LB¢/CU INc 

 ABS 

  

  
 
 MED IMPACT   90 - 110     340 - 412    
 HI IMPACT   95 - 130     359 - 491    
 X-HI IMPACT   110 - 150     415 - 567    
 HI HEAT   90 - 125     340 - 472    
 PIPE   85 - 95     321 - 359    
 SHEET   90 - 105     340 - 397    
 TRANSPARENT   134 - 205     506 - 774    
 FITTINGS   94 - 115     355 - 434    
 PLATING   165     623    
 FLAME RET   120 - 140     453 - 529    
 STRUCT FM   92 - 102     347 - 385    
 10% GLASS   134 - 145     506 - 548    
 30% GLASS   129 - 141     487    
 ABS/PC ALLOY   154 - 185     532 - 699    
 ABS/PVC ALLOY   139 - 144     525 - 544    
 ABS/NYLON ALLOY   199 - 355     752 - 1341    

 ACETAL 

  

  
 
 HOMOPOL   151 - 172     7.7 - 8.7    
 20% GLASS   171 - 235     8.7 - 11.9    
 COPOLYMER   144 - 160     7.3 - 8.1    
 25% GLASS   171 - 245     8.7 - 12.4    

 ACRYLIC 

  

  
 
 G-P   117     5.0    
 IMPACT   192     8.2    

 ACRYLONITRILE COPOL 

  

  
 
 EXTRUSION   101 - 116     4.0 - 4.6    
 INJECTION   120 - 135     4.8 - 5.4    

 ALKYD 

65 - 74   

4.9 - 5.5   
 

 CELLULOSICS 

  

  
 
 ACETATE   187     8.6    
 CAB   189     8.2    
 CAP   189     8.2    

 DAP (G-P) 

251 - 497   

16.7 - 34.7   
 

 EPOXY 

  

  
 
 G-P RESIN   116 - 126     NAd    
 COMPOUNDS          
 C/B/Te   123 - 166     9.4 - 12.9    
 R/C/Df   208 - 271     15.3 - 20.1    
 SEMICONDUCTOR          
 NOVOLAC   193 - 228     13.1 - 15.9    
 ANHYDRIDE   188 - 268     13.9 - 19.2    

 EVA 

  

  
 
 INJECTION   69 - 71     2.3 - 2.4    
 FILM EXTRU   67 - 69     2.3    

 EVOH 

330   

15   
 

 FLUORO-POLYMER 

  

  
 
 CTFE   5000 - 6000     385 - 462    
 ECTFE   1200 - 1680     90.7 - 120    
 ETFE   1205 - 1730     80.7 - 115.8    
 FEP   971 - 1470     74.8 - 113.2    
 PFA   1550 - 2520     120 - 195    
 PTFE   500 - 950     33.5 - 63.6    
 PVDF   750 - 1200     48 - 76.9    

 IONOMER 

  

  
 
 PACKAGING   127 - 166     4.3 - 6.0    
 INDUSTRIAL   150 - 244     5.0 - 8.3    

 LIQUID-CRYSTAL POLYMERS 

  

  
 
 INJECTION MIN FILLED   690 - 1035     44.2 - 72.1    
 GLASS FILLED   695 - 895     40 - 52    
 CARBON FILLED   1700 - 2000     83.2 - 138.6    
 UNFILLED   1000 - 1200     58 - 70    
 EXTRUSION UNFILLED   1200 - 2200     60.5 - 110.9    

 MELAMINE COMPOUND 

90 - 94   

5.5 - 5.6   
 

 MELAMINE/PHENOLIC COMPOUND 

75 - 83   

4.5 - 5.0   
 

 NYLON 

  

  
 
 TYPE 6   139 - 159     5.7 - 6.5    
 MIN FILLED   131 - 144     5.4 - 5.9    
 30% GLASS   148 - 173     6.0 - 7.0    
 TYPE 66   153 - 168     6.3 - 6.9    
 MIN FILLED   151 - 159     6.2 - 6.5    
 30% GLASS   142 - 192     5.8 - 7.9    
 TYPE 69   250 - 276     9.7 - 10.7    
 TYPE 6/10   286 - 313     12.4 - 13.6    
 TYPE 612   400     15.3    
 30% GLASS   309 - 311     14.7    
 40% GLASS   309     14.7    
 TYPE 46   295     12.6    
 TYPE 11   650 - 750     24.3 - 28    
 30% GLASS   NAd - NAd     NAd - NAd    
 40% GLASS   NAd - NAd     NAd - NAd    
 TYPE 12   318 - 341     12.1 - 13.0    
 30% GLASS   327 - 350     14.7 - 15.8    
 50% GLASS   299 - 340     15.6 - 17.8    
 TRANSPARENT AMORPHOUS   247 - 360     10.3 - 15.0    

 PHENOLIC MOLD COMP 

75   

3.8   
 
 REINFORCED GRADES   105 - 268     6.1 - 16    

 POLYAMIDE-IMIDEg 

  

  
 
 UNFILLED   2750     148.5    
 30% GLASS   2500     135    
 30% CARBON FIB.   3500     185    

 POLYARYLATE 

200 - 280   

8.8 - 12.3   
 

 POLYARYL SULFONE 

440   

21.8   
 

 POLYBUTYLENE 

  

  
 
 G-P   94 - 96     3.1    
 FILM   88 - 91     2.9    
 PIPE          
 COLD WATER   116 - 120     3.9 - 4.0    
 HOT WATER   162 - 166     5.5 - 5.6    

 POLYCARBONATE 

  

  
 
 INJECTION   158 - 173     7.9    
 20% GLASS   164 - 181     8.2    
 30% GLASS   165 - 207     9.3    
 EXTRUSION   133 - 171     7.7    
 BLOW MOLD   138 - 176     7.5    
 STRUCT FOAM   137 - 172     7.8    
 20% GLASS   219 - 243     11.0    
 FR   153 - 188     8.5    
 CD   124 - 186     8.4    

 POLYESTER (TP) PBT TYPE 

  

  
 
 UNFILLED   145 - 150     6.8 - 7.3    
 HI-IMP   165 - 175     7.8 - 8.3    
 30% GLASS, FR   195 - 215     9.2 - 10.1    
 STRUCT FOAM   159 - 165     NAd    

 PET 

  

  
 
 BOTTLE (RAILCAR)   73 - 77 Prices Went Down 
  3.7 - 3.8 Prices Went Down 
 
 MOD PET          
 30% GLASS   132 - 143     7.4    
 55% GLASS   148 - 155     9.8    
 30% GLASS FLAME RET   147 - 157     9.2    
 PETG COPOL   114 - 124     5.2 - 5.6    

 POLYESTER THERMOSET 

  

  
 
 G-P ORTHO   151 - 162     NAd    
 ISOPHTHALIC   175 - 196     NAd    
 BIS-A   210 - 235     NAd    

 PEEK 

4400   

231   
 
 30% GLASS   3300     173    

 POLYETHERIMIDE 

641 - 646   

29.3 - 29.5   
 
 30% GLASS   526 - 531     24.0 - 24.2    

 POLYETHERKETONE (PEK) 

2950   

130.1   
 
 30% GLASS   2600     153    

 POLYETHERSULFONE 

350 - 400   

17.2 - 19.7   
 
 30% GLASS   425 - 525     21 - 25.9    

 POLYETHYLENE (RAILCAR) LDPE 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING & EXTRU   50 - 52     1.7    
 INJECTION   52 - 54     1.7 - 1.8    
 LID RESIN   55 - 57     1.8 - 1.9    
 LINER   52 - 54     1.7 - 1.8    
 CLARITY   48 - 50     1.6 - 1.7    
 EXTRU COATG   53 - 55     1.8    
 BLOW MOLD   55 - 57     1.8 - 1.9    

 LLDPE, BUTENE BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   55 - 57     1.8 - 1.9    
 LME 30-DAYj   38 Prices Went Up  
  1.4 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   52 - 54     1.7 - 1.8    
 ROTOMOLD   49 - 51     1.6 - 1.7    

 LLDPE, HAO-BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   50 - 52     1.7    
 LID RESIN   60 - 62     1.9    
 LINER FILM   53 - 55     1.8    

 HDPE 

  

  
 
 G-P INJ MOLD   50 - 52     1.7    
 FILM   57 - 59     1.9    
 BLOW MOLD   58 - 60     1.9 - 2.0    

 HMW-HDPE 

  

  
 
 BLOW MOLDING   54 - 56     1.8    
 FILM   55 - 57     1.9    
 PIPE   62 - 64     2.0 - 2.1    

 UHMW-PE 

1.22 - 1.52   

4.1 - 5.1   
 

 PPE/PPO BASED RESIN 

  

  
 
 INJECTION   180     6.8    
 20% GLASSh   283     12.3    
 30% GLASSh   291     13.3    
 EXTRUSIONh   242     9.2    
 STRUCT FM   231     NAd    

 PPS 

  

  
 
 40% GLASS   450 - 520     27.0 - 31.2    
 55% GLASS/MINERAL   345 - 420     22.7 - 27.7    
 65% GLASS/MINERAL   270 - 315     18.9 - 22.1    

 POLYPROPYLENE (RAILCAR) 

  

  
 
 G-P HOMOPOL INJECTION   46 - 48     1.5 - 1.6    
 LME 30-DAYj   37.2 Prices Went Up  
  1.2 Prices Went Up  
 
 EXTRUSION FIBER   44 - 46     1.4 - 1.5    
 PROFILES   52 - 54     1.7    
 RANDOM COPOL          
 BLOW MOLDING   50 - 52     1.6 - 1.7    
 FILM   50 - 52     1.6 - 1.7    
 INJECTION   49 - 51     1.6    
 IMPACT COPOL          
 MED IMP   60 - 62     1.9 - 2.0    
 HI IMP   62 - 64     2.0 - 2.1    

 POLYSTYRENE (RAILCAR) 

  

  
 
 G-P CRYSTAL   56 - 62 Prices Went Up  
  2.1 - 2.3 Prices Went Up  
 
 HI HEAT   59 - 64 Prices Went Up  
  2.2 - 2.4 Prices Went Up  
 
 HIPS   65 - 71 Prices Went Up  
  2.4 - 2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 SUPER HI IMP   72 - 82 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 3.1 Prices Went Up  
 
 FR   75 - 80     2.8 - 3.0    
 STRUCT FM (FR)   66 - 68 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 Prices Went Up  
 

 EPS 

  

  
 
 UNMODIFIED   85 - 88     NAd    
 MODIFIED   86 - 90     NAd    

 POLYSULFONE 

650 - 750   

29 - 33   
 
 10% GLASS 430 20.6   799 - 875     36 - 39    
 30% GLASS 372 20.01   699 - 775     31 - 35    

 POLYURETHANE (TP) 

  

  
 
 ESTER TYPE   185 - 255     8 - 11    
 ETHER TYPE   245 - 295     10.6 - 13    

 PU ISOCYANATES 

  

  
 
 POLYMERIC MDI   125 - 145     NAd    
 80/20 TDI   135 - 145     NAd    

 PVC RESIN (RAILCAR) 

  

  
 
 G-P HOMOPOL   46 - 48     NAd    
 PIPE   45     NAd    
 FILM   51     NAd    
 COPOLYMER FLOORING   71 - 74     NAd    
 DISPERSION HOMOPOLY   81 - 87     NAd    
 COPOLYMER   86 - 90     NAd    
 CPVC PIPE COMPOUND   119     NAd    

 PVDC 

  

  
 
 EXTRUDABLE   162     NAd    

 SILICONES 

  

  
 
 MOLD. COMP.   581 - 640     38.1 - 39.3    
 SPECIALTY GR.   891 - 3148     NAd    
 SILICONE/EPOXY   339 - 343     22.5 - 22.8    

 STYRENEACRYLIC 

108 - 112   

3.7 - 4.0   
 

 SAN (G-P) 

80 - 88   

3.0 - 3.3   
 

 STYRENE MALEIC ANHYDRIDE 

  

  
 
 G-P   110 - 115     4.2 - 4.3    
 HI IMP   130 - 140     4.2 - 4.5    
 FR   175 - 183     6.7 - 7.0    

 TP ELASTOMERS 

  

  
 
 OLEFINIC   70 - 76     2.4    
 POLYAMIDE   300 - 350     10.9 - 12.7    
 POLYESTER   200 - 310     8.8 - 13.6    
 STYRENIC   82 - 237     2.9 - 8.3    

 UREA MOLDING COMPOUND 

  

  
 
 BLACK & BROWN          
 WHITE & IVORY          

 VINYL ESTER 

  

  
 
 COR RES   221 - 245     NAd    
 HEAT & COR RES   246 - 258     NAd    

KEY: Colored areas indicate pricing activity. An arrow () indicates direction of price change. aTruckload, unless otherwise specified. bUnfilled, natural color, unless otherwise specified. cBased on typical or average density. dNot applicable. eNovolac and anhydride grades for coils, bushings, transformers. fNovolac and anhydride grades for resisitors, capacitors, diodes. gIn quantities of 20,000 lb. h19,800-lb load. jLME 30-day futures contract for lots of 54,564 lb..