– No new bid-offer ranges heard
– Some talk of transactions heard
A quiet week continued for European benzene on Friday, with pricing for February and March unchanged from Friday. The 5-30 day forward delivery assessment rose 50 cents to $615/mt, based on the existing contango between the two months. Activity in the benzene market has been minimal this week, mirroring a lack of volatility upstream for ICE crude Brent, and a lack of activity downstream in the styrene market. Steam cracker turnarounds are due to begin in the second quarter, suggesting benzene prices could recover as less new material hits the market. But this is balanced against the potential impact of turnarounds by styrene producers in Europe. A trader said Friday that trading activity had occurred Friday at $640/mt, but did not name the month. This was also heard after the 16:30 close of the Market on Close assessment process. The talk comes ahead of the settlement window for the March European contract price for benzene, set to begin Friday.
S&P Global assessed benzene for delivery 5-30 days forward at $615/mt CIF ARA Friday, up 50 cents from Friday. February was assessed stable at $607/mt, with no disproving indications. March was assessed stable at $616/mt, also with no disproving indications. April was assessed at $621/mt, with no disproving indications. May was assessed stable at $631/mt, with no disproving indications. June was assessed flat to May. FOB was assessed at $615/mt, flat to CIF.