Plastics Technology

OCT 2018

Plastics Technology - Dedicated to improving Plastics Processing.

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Heading into the fourth quarter, a combination of lower prices for some key feedstocks and improvements in both feedstock and resin availability heralded a flat-to-lower pricing trend for PE, PP, PS, PVC, PET, ABS and PC. In contrast, tight feedstock and resin availability has been pushing prices upward for nylons 6 and 66. Those were the views last month of purchasing consultants from Resin Technology, Inc. (RTi), Fort Worth, Texas (rtiglobal. com); CEO Michael Greenberg of the Plastics Exchange in Chicago (theplasticsexchange.com); and Houston-based PetroChemWire (PCW, petrochemwire.com). PE PRICES FLAT TO DOWN Polyethylene prices were a mixed bag in August, with suppliers offering decreases of 3¢/lb for all PE resins to select proces- sors. Meanwhile, Dow delayed once again a 3¢/lb increase to September and added on a new 2¢ hike. No other supplier took sim- ilar action. Mike Burns, RTi's v.p. of PE markets, ventured that the 3¢/lb decrease would likely be realized by the rest of the industry. "We're now 3-5¢/lb from the bottom, so there is potential to see a total drop of 5¢/lb before year's end." The Plastic Exchange's Greenberg and PCW both reported soft spot PE prices, with dis- counts ranging from 1¢ to 2.5¢/lb. Burns noted that August was the highest production month for PE ever, while at the same time, tariffs newly imposed by China (which accounts for 8% of U.S. PE exports) caused PE exports to drop by about 100 million lb per month, creating an oversupply situation. However, with very good domestic demand, as well as export demand from countries other than China, Burns expects the oversupply to wane. "What's good for suppliers is that oil prices Flat to Lower Pricing for Volume Resins— Except Nylons Improved supply/demand balance in key feedstocks and resins is steering prices flat to lower, but not for nylons. By Lilli Manolis Sherman Senior Editor are up 2% and expected to keep moving up through the rest of the year, creating more opportunity to export." PP PRICES PEAK Polypropylene prices moved up in step with propylene monomer by 2¢/lb in August. However, end-of-month monomer spot prices were moving down and September contract prices were expected to drop, according to Scott Newell, RTi's v.p. of PP markets. He predicted that PP prices may have peaked. "The issues with propylene availability have not totally gone away, but we're seeing some demand Market Prices Effective Mid-September 2018 Resin Grade ¢/lb POLYETHYLENE (railcar) LDPE, LINER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101-103 LLDPE BUTENE, FILM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84-86 NYMEX 'FINANCIAL' FUTURES . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 OC TOBER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 HDPE, G-P INJECTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103-105 HDPE, BLOW MOLDING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93-95 NYMEX 'FINANCIAL' FUTURES . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 OC TOBER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 HDPE, HMW FILM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110-112 POLYPROPYLENE (railcar) G-P HOMOPOLYMER, INJECTION . . . . . . . . . . . 93-95 NYMEX 'FINANCIAL' FUTURES . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 OC TOBER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 IMPACT COPOLYMER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95-97 POLYST YRENE (railcar) G-P CRYSTAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106-108 HIPS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112-114 PVC RESIN (railcar) G-P HOMOPOLYMER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83-85 PIPE GR ADE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82-84 PET (truckload) U.S. BOT TLE GR ADE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78-82 Polypropylene Price Trends Homopolymer AUG SEPT Copolymer AUG SEPT 2¢/lb 2¢/lb Polyethylene Price Trends HDPE Injection AUG SEPT HDPE Blow Molding AUG SEPT HDPE HMW AUG SEPT LDPE AUG SEPT LLDPE Butene AUG SEPT 62 OCTOBER 2018 Plastics Technology PTonline.com YO U R B U S I N E S S Resin Pricing Analy sis

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