NWE Xylenes – PX trade thin amid sharp price falls in Asia

Chemical Industry

– OX CP fully settled

– Lack of MX activity persists

Paraxylene spot prices in Europe were unchanged Friday at $840/mt FOB ARA for May and June. This came despite sharp drops in the Asian markets, where H2 June and H1 July cargoes shed $25.25/mt and $21/mt, respectively, pricing at $948.750/mt CFR Taiwan/China H2 June and $946/mt CFR Taiwan/China H1 July. The sell-off was due in part to “a drop in naphtha which is carrying into [PX],” a trader said. It was also due to a “distinct lack of buyers in the market,” another source said, who was put off by growing length in paraxylene markets globally. European mixed xylene trade remained thin Friday, with no fresh business heard concluded. Petrochemical demand was still low, but sellers seemed unwilling to lower offers to gasoline blending values. As a result, the market was relatively inactive and premiums to Eurobob gasoline were stable on the day at $110/mt CIF ARA for May and June. In contract news, following reportedly difficult negotiations, the April orthoxylene European contract price was confirmed as fully settled Friday at Eur930/mt, up Eur70/mt from March. The sharp increase followed an increase of $140/mt in the FOB ARA spot price since April 1, itself a reaction to continuing European production and supply shortages. European supply has been fed by the US and Korean markets. Pricing in the spot market was unaffected by the settlement, remaining stable on the day at $1,150/mt FOB ARA. Additionally, one trader expressed concern over how long orthoxylene pricing could remain above paraxylene.

RATIONALE:

S&P Global assessed M1 May and M2 June mixed xylene CIF ARA premiums over Eurobob gasoline stable on the day at $110/mt, amid no disproving indications. May Northwest European paraxylene was stable at $840/mt FOB ARA, at the bottom of a trader’s range of $840-$860/mt. June was stable at $840/mt FOB ARA, maintaining parity with May. The paraxylene 5-30 day forward spot price was assessed as the average of the period at $840/mt FOB ARA, stable on the day. Orthoxylene was assessed at $1,150/mt FOB ARA, stable on the day amid no disproving indications.

Chemical Industry
Chemical Industry

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