Commodity resin prices moved up haltingly, though polystyrene prices promptly fell back.

Commodity resin prices moved up haltingly, though polystyrene prices promptly fell back. August appears quiet on the pricing front, except in PE, where a hike was announced. Domestic demand is not bad but not hot either—export demand is holding prices up right now. Monomer prices are rising just a little, except for softness in benzene, which affects PS prices.

 

PE prices up

PE prices moved up in July, as suppliers pushed through the 5¢/lb increases originally slated for June. A 4¢ increase was announced for Aug. 1. Meanwhile, the London Metal Exchange (LME) short-term futures contract for August in blown film butene LLDPE sold at 55.3¢/lb, hardly changed from July’s 55.1¢/lb. (Note that this is LME’s brand-new regional contract for North America, whereas LME previously published only world prices.)

Contributing factors: Despite low buying activity and high processor inventories in June, PE suppliers succeeded in raising prices last month. Says one major supplier, “Demand in July was up—as good as in July 2006.” He noted that overall domestic PE demand was off by 1.2% through May, but the domestic slump was offset by an increase of 30% in export demand. He described current demand as good in injection and blow molding and in stretch film and packaging, but slow in construction and pipe. Strong export demand pulled down PE suppliers’ inventories to below average, and resin plant utilization rates were at 90% to 95%. Spot ethylene monomer prices moved up a few pennies last month, while contract prices looked likely to rise 2¢ to 3¢ after an increase of 1.5¢ in June.

 

PP tabs to rise?

PP suppliers aimed to implement a 3¢/lb increase last month, and on July 17, Basell notified customers that it would add another penny starting Aug. 1. Meanwhile, LME’s North American August futures contract for g-p injection-grade homopolymer sold at 58.74¢/lb, up from July’s 55.4¢.

Contributing factors: Suppliers attribute the latest increase to continued strong demand—particularly for exports, recent capacity shortfalls in North America, and the need to regain acceptable profit margins in light of continued volatility in the cost of feedstocks and energy. Resin plant utilization rates are said to be in low 90% range. Propylene monomer contracts dropped 2.25¢/lb in June, but tight supplies pushed July contracts up 0.75¢/lb.

One leading supplier said PP sales for the U.S., Canada, and Mexico are up 1.5% for the first five months of 2007. Mexico may account for most of that increase. What’s more, U.S. PP exports are up 100% year-to-date.

 

PVC hike for August

PVC prices in June rose 1¢ or 2¢. Oxy and Shintech, sent letters to customers last month announcing a further 2¢ increase for Aug. 1. PVC demand in mid July remained much like that in June: not great, but not down either.

 

PS does another yo-yo

Polystyrene rose 2¢ in June, only to fall back again in early July when Total told customers it was lowering prices 2¢, and others followed. August is expected to be flat. Contract benzene prices, which settled at $4/gal in June, fell 30¢ in July. However, spot prices rose slightly in mid-July.

Other price increases

  • Bayer MaterialScience hiked PC 14¢/lb on June 1.
  • Ticona lifted tabs on LCPs by 28¢/lb on July 16.
  • Dow Chemical raised prices of all grades of Engage polyolefin elastomers by 8¢/lb Aug. 1.
  • Degussa High Performance Polymers will raise all its nylons by an average of 8% on Sept. 1.

 

LATE NEWS FLASH
Basell to Acquire Lyondell Chemical
At press time, Basell of the Netherlands (U.S. office in Elkton, Md.), the global leader in polyolefins, announced that it had signed a definitive agreement to buy Lyondell Chemical Co., Houston. Lyondell is the owner of Equistar Chemicals and produces PE, PP, TPO, and Plexar tie-layer resins. Also important to Basell will be Lyondell’s propylene monomer because Basell is not “back-integrated” at present. 

 

Market Prices Effective Mid-July A
 
 RESIN GRADEb¢/LB¢/CU INc 

 ABS 

  

  
 
 MED IMPACT   84 - 90     3.1 - 3.4    
 HI IMPACT   89 - 125     3.3 - 4.7    
 X-HI IMPACT   99 - 140     3.7 - 5.3    
 HI HEAT   89 - 110     3.3 - 3.8    
 PIPE   89 - 100     3.7 - 3.8    
 SHEET   94 - 110     3.5 - 4.2    
 TRANSPARENT   129 - 200     5.6 - 8.8    
 FITTINGS   89 - 110     3.5 - 4.3    
 PLATING   100 - 130     3.9 - 5.1    
 FLAME RET   124 - 140     4.6 - 5.9    
 STRUCT FM   87 - 97     3.2 - 4.3    
 10% GLASS   129 - 140     4.8 - 5.6    
 30% GLASS   124 - 136     4.6 - 6.3    
 ABS/PC ALLOY   149 - 180     5.5 - 6.8    
 ABS/PVC ALLOY   134 - 139     5.0 - 5.2    
 ABS/NYLON ALLOY   194 - 350     9.0 - 16    


 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   46 - 52     1.5 - 1.7    
 FILM EXTRU   42 - 49     1.4 - 1.6    


 EVOH 

315   

13.4   
 


 FLUORO-POLYMER 

  

  
 
 CTFE   5000 - 6000     385 - 462    
 ECTFE   1200 - 1680     90.7 - 120    
 ETFE   1155 - 1680     70.7 - 102.8    
 FEP   971 - 1470     74.8 - 113.2    
 PFA   1550 - 2520     120 - 195    
 PTFE   450 - 900     34.8 - 69.7    
 PVDF   660 - 1000     49.9 - 75.6    


 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   329 - 341     13.6 - 14.1    
 30% GLASS   331 - 350     15.0 - 15.8    
 40% GLASS   347 - 360     17.7 - 18.5    
 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   138 - 165     5.9 - 7.0    
 20% GLASS   177 - 190     7.6 - 8.2    
 30% GLASS   178 - 217     7.6 - 9.3    
 EXTRUSION   145 - 180     6.3 - 7.8    
 BLOW MOLD   155 - 190     6.7 - 8.2    
 STRUCT FOAM   149 - 181     6.4 - 7.8    
 20% GLASS   235 - 255     10.1 - 11.0    
 FR   166 - 197     7.1 - 8.5    
 CD   140 - 200     6.0 - 8.6    


 POLYESTER (TP) PBT TYPE 

  

  
 
 UNFILLED   145 - 150 Prices Went Up  
  6.8 - 7.0   
 
 HI-IMP   160 - 165 Prices Went Up  
  8.4 - 8.6   
 
 30% GLASS, FR   190 - 210 Prices Went Up  
  11.2 - 12.5   
 
 STRUCT FOAM   159 - 165 Prices Went Up  
  NAd   
 


 PET 

  

  
 
 BOTTLE (RAILCAR)   78 - 80     4.0    
 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    
 RESIN GRADEb¢/LB¢/CU INc 


 POLYESTER THERMOSET 

  

  
 
 G-P ORTHO   147 - 152     NAd    
 ISOPHTHALIC   175 - 185     NAd    
 BIS-A   220 - 225     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   85 - 87 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 INJECTION   87 - 89 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 - 2.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 LID RESIN   89 - 91 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 LINER   84 - 86 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 CLARITY   83 - 85 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 EXTRU COATG   88 - 90 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 BLOW MOLD   90 - 92 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 - 3.0 Prices Went Up  
 


 LLDPE, BUTENE BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   72 - 74 Prices Went Up  
  2.4 - 2.5 Prices Went Up  
 
 LME 30-DAYj   74 - 76 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 - 2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   55.3 Prices Went Up  
  1.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 ROTOMOLD   74 - 76 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 - 2.6 Prices Went Up  
 


 LLDPE, HAO-BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   77 - 79 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 - 2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 LID RESIN   88 - 90 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 - 3.0 Prices Went Up  
 
 LINER FILM   81 - 83 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 Prices Went Up  
 


 HDPE 

  

  
 
 G-P INJ MOLD   74 - 76 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 - 2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   83 - 85 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 BLOW MOLD   84 - 86 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 Prices Went Up  
 

 HMW-HDPE 

  

  
 
 BLOW MOLDING   81 - 83 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   82 - 84 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 PIPE   89 - 91 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 Prices Went Up  
 


 UHMW-PE 

100 - 125   

3.6 - 3.7   
 


 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   83 - 85     2.6 - 2.7    
 LME 30-DAYj   58.7 Prices Went Up  
  2.0 Prices Went Up  
 
 EXTRUSION FIBER   81 - 83     2.6    
 PROFILES   87 - 88     2.8    
 RANDOM COPOL          
 BLOW MOLDING   85 - 87     2.7 - 2.8    
 FILM   86 - 88     2.7 - 2.8    
 INJECTION   88 - 90     2.8 - 2.9    
 IMPACT COPOL          
 MED IMP   96 - 98     3.2 - 3.2    
 HI IMP   98 - 100     3.2 - 3.3    


 POLYSTYRENE (RAILCAR) 

  

  
 
 G-P CRYSTAL   84 - 89     3.1 - 3.3    
 HI HEAT   87 - 93     3.3 - 3.5    
 HIPS   85 - 90     3.2 - 3.4    
 SUPER HI IMP   95 - 99     3.6 - 3.7    
 FR   103 - 111     3.9 - 4.2    
 STRUCT FM (FR)   105 - 108     NA    


 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   50 - 52     NAd    
 PIPE   49     NAd    
 FILM   55 - 58     NAd    
 COPOLYMER FLOORING   68 - 70     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) 

66 - 74   

2.5 - 2.8   
 


 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   228 - 240     NAd    
 HEAT & COR RES   253     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..