Although a number of resins saw price increases in January, weak domestic markets hurt suppliers’ prospects to implement hikes in February and March.

Last PE Hike For A While?

Polyethylene prices moved up 3¢/lb in January, and suppliers were aiming to push through 3¢ more last month. Moreover, a new 5¢/lb hike had been announced for Feb. 1. Still, the London Metal Exchange (LME) North American futures contract for March in blown film butene LLDPE was 65.7¢/lb, up from February’s 64.7¢.

Contributing factors: High energy costs and strong export sales in December and January helped resin suppliers implement half of their intended 6¢/lb price hike. This was despite lackluster domestic demand, particularly in the film arena. Says Mike Burns, global business manager for PE at resin purchasing consultant Resin Technology, Inc. (RTI), Forth Worth, Texas, “While the resin producers are feeling downward pricing pressure from the domestic side, the PE market is currently being driven by energy costs and global demand. One wild card is whether exports to China rebound following the Chinese New Year. The other is energy prices.” He and other industry sources have some doubts that the remaining 3¢/lb from the January hike will go through, and they expect the February 5¢ hike to fail.

January ethylene monomer contract prices stayed flat at 61.5¢/lb, despite attempted increases. Ethylene spot prices dropped below 50¢/lb, the lowest since last September.

 

PP Prices Flat

Polypropylene prices were flat last month, after moving up 1¢ to 2¢/lb in January. Suppliers have been unable to implement 9¢ worth of outstanding hikes from December and January. An additional increase of 2¢/lb for Feb. 1 was initiated by Basell but did not gain industrywide support. However, the LME’s March futures contract for g-p injection-grade homopolymer sold at 68.4¢/lb, up from February’s 67.8¢.

Contributing factors: Demand slumped in January and February, and industry sources saw no improvement coming in the short term. Export demand also has not rebounded to last year’s high levels, except from South America. Resin suppliers’ plant operating rates have dropped into the 80% to 85% range and their inventory build-up is nearing 40 days.

Propylene monomer prices rose only 0.5¢/lb in January, out of the 3¢ to 4¢ originally sought. Spot prices had been dropping, and Newell and other industry sources expected February contracts to fall another 2¢ to 3¢.

 

March PS Hike Posted

Dow broke ranks with other polystyrene suppliers and lowered its Feb. 1 increase from 4¢ to 2¢/lb. Then Chevron, Total, and Ineos Nova all issued a 5¢ increase for March 1 (2¢ of it representing a TVA from February’s hike), but Dow announced only a 3¢ hike.

EPS producers all supported a price hike for March 1, the first in months. Flint Hills (formerly Huntsman) and BASF posted for 3¢, Nova wants 4¢.

Contributing factors: PS demand was only moderate in February, and the price hikes were feedstock-driven. Contract benzene for February was $3.54/gal and spot prices were around $3.80.

 

PET Prices Flat For Now

PET resin tabs have remained flat since December, but a price increase could be coming next month, spurred by the usual seasonal upswing in demand.

Contributing factors: Big price increases last year in feedstocks--paraxylene and ethylene glycol--prompted an attempt to raise prices last month. That effort failed, in part because prices of ethylene glycol then dropped 10¢ to 15¢/lb, which amounts to 3¢ to 5¢ of resin price. However, the price of paraxylene has remained high and is expected by some industry sources to move up further in the second quarter. A PET price hike is very likely to emerge in early in that quarter. While demand for PET has been soft, it typically picks up in the second quarter, too.

 

PVC Demand Weak, Price In Doubt

Resin producers and buyers alike complain of the accounting difficulty when resin prices aren’t known until a month or two after purchase. PVC may have risen 2¢ in January, but that won’t be decided until the indexes that now determine most pricing come out in late February. Over half of big buyers’ prices are based on an index or indexes. The rest of the market was invoiced 2¢ more.

Contributing factors: Pipe demand is very weak and prices are down. Resin producers’ operating rates are believed to be in the mid 80s, supported mainly by strong exports based on the weak dollar.

 

More Price Increases

DuPont raised prices of Elvax EVAs by 9¢/lb on March 1. In engineering resins, DuPont also hiked its Delrin acetals by 15¢/lb on Jan. 25. Also, Nycoa raised tabs on its nylon 6 products by 8¢/lb for truckload shipments on Feb. 11. And Lubrizol Advanced Materials added 16¢/lb to Estane TPU prices on March 1. 

 

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

 ABS 

  

  
 
 MED IMPACT   84 - 95     3.2 - 3.6    
 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   160     6.0    
 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   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   693 - 1050     44.4 - 67.2    


 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   171 - 182     7.4 - 7.9    
 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   150 - 185     7.0 - 7.5    
 STRUCT FOAM   149 - 181     6.4 - 7.8    
 20% GLASS   235 - 255     10.1 - 11.0    
 FR   166 - 197     7.1 - 8.5    
 CD   135 - 195     5.8 - 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)   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   142 - 152     NAd    
 ISOPHTHALIC   170 - 185     NAd    
 BIS-A   205 - 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   81 - 83 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 - 2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 INJECTION   83 - 85 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 LID RESIN   85 - 87 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 LINER   80 - 82 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 CLARITY   79 - 81 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 EXTRU COATG   84 - 86 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 BLOW MOLD   86 - 88 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 


 LLDPE, BUTENE BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   78 - 80 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 - 2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 LME 30-DAYj   80 - 85 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   80 - 82 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 ROTOMOLD   80 - 82 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 


 LLDPE, HAO-BASED 

  

  
 
 G-P MOLDING   81 - 83 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 LID RESIN   91 - 93 Prices Went Up  
  2.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 LINER FILM   84 - 86 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 Prices Went Up  
 


 HDPE 

  

  
 
 G-P INJ MOLD   78 - 80 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   87 - 89 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 - 2.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 BLOW MOLD   88 - 91 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 - 2.9 Prices Went Up  
 

 HMW-HDPE 

  

  
 
 BLOW MOLDING   85 - 87 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   86 - 88 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 PIPE   93 - 95 Prices Went Up  
  3.0 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 Prices Went Up  
  2.6 - 2.7 Prices Went Up  
 
 LME 30-DAYj   68.4 Prices Went Up  
  2.2 Prices Went Up  
 
 EXTRUSION FIBER   81 - 83 Prices Went Up  
  2.5 - 2.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 PROFILES   86 - 88 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 RANDOM COPOL          
 BLOW MOLDING   87 - 89 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 FILM   87 - 89 Prices Went Up  
  2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 INJECTION   86 - 88 Prices Went Up  
  2.7 - 2.8 Prices Went Up  
 
 IMPACT COPOL          
 MED IMP   97 - 99 Prices Went Up  
  3.1 - 3.2 Prices Went Up  
 
 HI IMP   99 - 101 Prices Went Up  
  3.2 Prices Went Up  
 


 POLYSTYRENE (RAILCAR) 

  

  
 
 G-P CRYSTAL   88 - 94 Prices Went Up  
  3.3 - 3.5 Prices Went Up  
 
 HI HEAT   91 - 97 Prices Went Up  
  3.4 - 3.6 Prices Went Up  
 
 HIPS   89 - 94 Prices Went Up  
  3.3 - 3.5 Prices Went Up  
 
 SUPER HI IMP   99 - 103 Prices Went Up  
  3.7 - 3.9 Prices Went Up  
 
 FR   104 - 110 Prices Went Up 
  3.9 - 4.1 Prices Went Up  
 
 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   58 - 60     NAd    
 PIPE   57     NAd    
 FILM   63 - 65     NAd    
 COPOLYMER FLOORING   69 - 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   218 - 235     NAd    
 HEAT & COR RES   243 - 248     NAd