For June, the downward polymer price trend of recent months was sharply reversed with gains across all product sectors. The surge in crude oil prices and petrochemical feedstock is squeezing margins along the supply chain. Polymer producers responded to growing cost pressure and margin erosion by announcing sizeable price increases last month.
L/LDPE gained between E70-80/tonne due to lively demand and tightening availability. HDPE blow moulding prices were E50-60/tonne higher than in May, with slightly lower increases for blown film and injection moulding. Polystyrene prices were E80/tonne higher following an unexpected surge in styrene monomer costs. Polypropylene and PVC prices were up around E30/tonne compared with May.
Converters are bracing themselves for an even bigger price surge in July. Polyethylene suppliers will be seeking significantly higher prices to compensate for an expected three-digit rise in the Q3 ethylene contract price. Propylene and styrene monomer costs are however expected to rise more moderately.