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STYROLUTION DECREASES PS PRICES BY €90/MT
polystyrene packaging

INEOS Styrolution decreases PS prices by €90/mt in December versus November after the triple-digit decrease in the monomer styrene price in December.

The company noted that the decrease on general purpose polystyrene (GPPS) was valid from the first of December. Moreover, a €120/mt surcharge applied on high impact polystyrene (HIPS).

The styrene monomer contract price decreased by €132/mt in December from November. However, the smaller decrease on polystyrene (PS) is likely to do with the gas price increasing again in November.

Since gas prices started to spike, suppliers of polymers, including styrenics, applied energy surcharges based on gas prices.

After the summer, gas prices plummeted from the peaks above €300/MWh. As such, suppliers decreased PS prices more than the movement in the monomer price.

However, in November, the picture changed again, with gas prices increasing from just below €100/MWh to a peak of €147/MWh. The latest price is now at €135/MWh.

clear granules

PS prices fall in November versus October by €40/mt, according to the latest price ssessments by GC Intelligence.

The decrease represents suppliers giving back some of the energy surcharges after gas prices retreated in October.

Normally, polystyrene (PS) prices tend to move broadly in line with the styrene monomer price.

However, due to the volatility in energy costs, suppliers across the polymer industry applied surcharges mainly based on gas futures.

In November, the styrene contract prices increased by €4/mt to €1557/mt, but lower energy costs meant suppliers decreased prices on PS.

PS prices fall in November also because of the slowdown in demand and healthy imports which helped buyers in the negotiations.

While gas prices have decreased from the peaks reached in August at above €300/MWh, November has seen a rebound.

Gas futures started the month around €100/MWh and climbed to €140/MWh at the end of November.

Another round of surcharges will be disastrous for the European polymer industry which continues to suffer from low demand and competitive imports.

ROEHM DECREASES MMA PRICES
pmma

Roehm decreases MMA prices from the first of December “in order to support European customers”.

The decrease of €175/mt comes amid slowing demand and competitive imports across the value chain in Europe.

Methyl methacrylate (MMA) spot prices posted decreases in recent months, with imports offered below €2000/mt, according to the latest data from GC Intelligence.

The rise in energy prices in Europe pushed up prices and decreased competitiveness against imports.

The lower demand in Asia driven by the slowdown in China fuelled cheap imports, not only for raw materials but also for finished goods.

However, Roehm decreases MMA prices also likely helped by the recent retreat in gas prices.

The gas futures price peaked in the summer above €300/MWh and decreased around €100/MWh in October.

Nonetheless, gas prices found renewed support in November, climbing to €130/mt, and raising the risk of another spike during the peak demand period of the winter.

Methyl methacrylate (MMA) finds its uses in the paints and coatings industry, but mainly as a raw material for polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA).

Roehm, based in Germany, is a major producer of both MMA and PMMA.

EU inflation hits 11.5% annually in October, according to the latest data by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union (EU).

Meanwhile, the annual inflation for the euro zone reached 10.6%.

Some of the lowest rates were seen in France and Spain, with inflation at just above 7%.

However, other countries are enduring much higher rates, such as the Netherlands at 16.2%.

The high inflation rates in Europe increase the chance of more contractionary monetary measures and slower growth next year.

While demand for the polymer industry looks set to remain subdued next year, some positive dynamics were emerging.

For instance, crude oil prices were decreasing mainly due to unrest in China. At the same time, gas prices were high but stable at around €120/MWh.

The stable or lower energy prices if sustained will help ease or even slow down inflation.

What is more, the lower overall demand seen during the past few months and a plunge freight costs should also start to ease the pressure on inflation.

Heightened uncertainty will most certainly characterize the polymer industry in the next few months.

However, some signs are emerging that would suggest the market may have reached or is near the worst point.

PS PRICES SEE DECREASES
polystyrene packaging

PS prices see decreases in November versus October despite a relatively stable styrene market, according to GC Intelligence price assessments.

The monthly styrene contract showed little change with an increase of €4/mt from October to November.

However, as gas futures decreased during October from around €170/MWh to €120/MWh, buyers trimmed the recent energy surcharges.

The double-digit decreases however meant PS prices in Europe remain substantially above their long-term trend.

PS prices see decreases also due to weak market conditions driven by falling net trade, players destocking, and poor economics.

Import offers for general purpose polystyrene (GPPS) fell to just above €1500/mt CIF, a level much below domestic prices.

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