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TRINSEO ANNOUNCES TRIPLE-DIGIT INCREASES
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After the spike of more than €200/mt of the styrene contract price in November, Trinseo announces triple-digit increases on ABS, SAN, and PS.


However, the increases are more than the cost increase of the main raw material styrene. This is most probably to do with the recent surge in utility costs.

INEOS Styrolution has also announced similar increases on polystyrene (PS), namely €300/mt and higher than the increase in the styrene contract of €232/mt.

Trinseo’s increases on general purpose polystyrene (GPPS) and high impact polystyrene (HIPS) are €290/mt.

While the increase on styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) is €240/mt. And acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) is €230/mt.

There is a strong chance that the announced increases will be accepted. The markets remain highly uncertain and volatile amid supply shortages, especially for ABS but also for PS. As such, buyers may have little choice but to accept the entire increases.

TRINSEO SEEKS UTILITIES SURCHARGE

Trinseo seeks utilities surcharge of €200-300/mt on styrenics and polycarbonates products from 1 November.


Trinseo will implement €200/mt surcharge on the following products: styrene monomer (SM); polystyrene (PS); styrene acrylonitrile (SAN); and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS).

However, a surcharge of €300/mt will be implemented on polycarbonate (PC), PC/ABS Resins, and ABS Long Glass Fiber (ABS LGF).

The company noted that “these surcharges are in response to unprecedented and escalating pressure from energy prices and apply to all current agreements and contracts.”

Trinseo is not the only company to have take the step to implement surcharges in response to the spike in energy prices.

Many other polymer producers are taking the same step. For example, Celanese is applying a surcharge of €500/mt on POM.

If energy prices will continue to increase amid short supply of many polymers, producers will probably succeed in passing on the extra costs.

The higher energy costs adds yet another factor fuelling volatility across the entire value chain of the polymer industry.

As the increasing turmoil in many markets reduces visibility further, many players expect a prolonged volatile period ahead.

Engineering Resins demand is buoyant in July in Europe, despite ongoing raw material shortages impacting downstream markets. The severe shortages experienced earlier in Q2 left many buyers with low inventories. Therefore, part of the current demand may be to do with stock building.


PC

Polycarbonate (PC) prices in Q3 are expected to stabilise as producers should succeed to maintain current margins. The good demand and extremely short supply will support this trend.

PMMA

Polymethyl Methacrylate (PMMA) costs in July are increasing again, driven by rising methyl methacrylate (MMA) prices. The MMA market is experiencing another wave of shortages.

PA6

PA6 prices in July are unlikely to retreat in line with feedstocks. Prices should remain relatively steady in Q3 amid volatile markets across the value chain.

PA66

PA66 supply in July suffered another blow after Italian producer RadiciGroup declared force majeure (FM). The company suffered a power blackout at its plant in Novara.

ABS

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) prices in July will decrease in line with costs. However, supply remains tight, partly because of the closed arbitrage from Asia to Europe.

SAN

Styrene Acrylonitrile (SAN) supply during the past few weeks has improved from the critical shortages experienced earlier in the year because of better acrylonitrile (ACN) supply conditions.

PS

Polystyrene (PS) demand in July increased, leaving many sellers sold out. This reflects both strong demand and probably buyers replenishing stocks after signs that costs could start to increase again.

PP

Polypropylene (PP) supply in July improved in Europe as imports increased, but the market remains tight. Buyers are struggling to negotiate lower prices.


Overall, while supply of many polymers improved from the critical shortages earlier in the year, buyers continue to face shortages, long lead times, and high prices. As the pandemic is far from over, market participants will most likely have to wait until 2022 before seeing a rebalancing of the markets.

While many buyers face ongoing struggles for availability, signs of relief emerged in June. The polymer industry for months experienced severe shortages, high costs, and price spikes. But the upward trend has ended in many markets, suggesting the likelihood of an overall better balance in Q3 and a move away from the extreme tightness seen in 1H 2021.


PC

Polycarbonate (PC) buyers look set to absorb more increases in June. However, the lower raw material costs appear to have led to a softening of the highest offers seen during the past few months. This reinforces the view that values are getting close to the peak.

PMMA

Polymethyl Methacrylate (PMMA) imports have become more competitive despite ongoing logistics troubles, helped also by favourable exchange rates. While this may not be enough to prevent further price increases in Q3, it will certainly help to limit the upside.

PA6

Nylon 6 (PA6) costs decreased after a sharp drop in the benzene contract price in June. While supply is tight on the back of the shortage of caprolactam, some sellers are already lowering offers. The picture on price movements, however, remains mixed in June.

PA66

Nylon 66 (PA66) production issues plunged the market into another crisis recently, but the upside seems to be running out of steam. The ease in costs, and lower demand in some markets due to raw material issues downstream appear to be supporting rollovers from some sellers.

ABS

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) prices will fall after the big decrease in the styrene contract in June. But a tight market should allow producers to decrease prices by a smaller amount than the decrease in costs.

SAN

Styrene Acrylonitrile (SAN) supply is set to improve as availability of acrylonitrile (ACN) has increased. But low stocks and turnarounds will prevent a big fall in June.

PS

Polystyrene (PS) supply is tight for HIPS and better for GPPS. Nonetheless, offers plunged on the back of lower monomer values. Some sellers appear to be in a race to place more volumes on the market before further falls.

PP

Polypropylene (PP) buyers continue to receive more offers from Asia, placing pressure on spot prices. Spot prices are gathering downward momentum in June.


By and large buyers so far have faced slightly better supply and lower offers on most markets. However, for many the situation remains rather chaotic, and some might even have to absorb further increases. But signals suggest a better market environment going into the slow period of the summer.

Trinseo lifts force majeure (FM) on styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) which had been in place since early February.

The company had heavily reduced production of SAN because of the severe shortage of acrylonitrile (ACN).

The shortage of ACN in Europe stemmed mainly from production issues sustained by INEOS Nitriles in December. This caused INEOS to declare FM on ACN.

Market participants in the past few months noted that other producers of ACN had also limited availability.

But in the past few weeks, the supply situation on ACN seems to be improving.

For example, one buyer said recently that INEOS Nitriles is now able to deliver all required quantities of ACN.

SAN, a copolymer plastic, finds its uses in may household products, such as appliances and housewares.

Trinseo is manufacturer of plastics, latex binders, and synthetic rubber.

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