First price increases emerge / More expensive feedstocks and imports expected to drive prices up further in October / Lack of significant impulses in demand
The increase of EUR 41/t in the European benzene contract for September was enough to bring the downward trend with engineering thermoplastic prices to a halt. In one or two cases, in fact, prices actually went up. Exceptions were POM, PMMA, and especially PA 6.6, where there was a further decline.
The situation is expected to change only minimally in the coming weeks. As long as imports govern the market and demand remains weak, the European market will want lower prices – and will also get them. This is likely to be the case with PA 6.6, POM, and PMMA.
Polycarbonate, PC/ABS blends, and PA 6, on the other hand, will not just hit the bottom due to more expensive precursors such as caprolactam and benzene (October: up EUR 232/t). Producers are pushing for significant increases, also because of the considerably more expensive imports.
No significant changes are to be expected in any of the customer sectors in the coming weeks. The construction industry is still stagnating, while automotive and E&E do not see any possibility of recovery before the end of the year.