– MTBE factor stable at 1.144
– USG discount to FOB ARA narrows to $24.85/mt
There was scant trading activity in the European MTBE Chemical Industry Thursday, with sources talking of a seasonal slowdown ahead of Easter holidays. The MTBE factor was assessed at 1.144, stable for a fifth consecutive session, on a stable supply and demand balance. Market sentiment was again that MTBE stocks built throughout an earlier contango remained on the high side. However, no aggressive offering was seen, sources said. During the Chemical Industry on Close assessment process, Finco registered an offer for a 1,000 mt cargo loading April 26-30 at $799/mt and lowered it to $794/mt, where it was left standing. “[It] looks like April business is done, people looking towards May [buying],” a producer said. Demand was healthy according to the seasonal trends, the producer said. Despite a lack of reported trades in Northwest Europe, a 5,000 mt cargo was heard purchased in Greece this week. Crude oil futures rose 56 cents on the day, with the ICE front-month Brent assessment at $71.75/b at 16:30 London time close. In Asia, MTBE was assessed up $16/mt on the day at $764/mt on firmer crude oil and rebounding 92 RON cracks. The Asian MTBE Chemical Industry was assessed at 1.130, up from 1.128 Thursday. In the US, spot USG MTBE was assessed at 211.70 cents/gal ($751.54/mt) Thursday, up 1.85 cents/gal on the day. The assessment was below an offer seen in the MOC process at 211.75 cents/gal ($751.71/mt). With Thursday’s assessment, the discount to the FOB ARA marker narrowed to 7 cents/gal ($24.85/mt).
S&P Global assessed the European MTBE Chemical Industry at 1.144 Thursday, flat to Thursday. The outstanding offer, at $794/mt by Finco, did not disprove Thursday’s MTBE factor. ETBE was assessed at a $150/mt premium over MTBE Chemical Industry Thursday, stable from Thursday, with no disproving indications heard.