Standard PA6 resin prices have stabilised over the last couple of months following sharp price reductions in Q1. PA66 prices, on the other hand, are down sharply, with notations tumbling by up to €200/tonne during the last three months.
PA6 producers have been less inclined to negotiate with converters in recent months due to rising caprolactam feedstock prices. PA66 prices fell far less severely than PA6 prices in Q1, and sellers reluctantly felt obliged to pass on the reduction in feedstock costs they had sustained since Q4 09.
PA supply is balanced due to production cutbacks and temporary plant closures.
PA order intake for Q2 was estimated to be only around three-quarters of the Q2 2008 level. There were, however, signs of a slight upturn in order volumes in May and June.
PA feedstock is in tight supply and costs are increasing. It would not be a surprise therefore to see producers announce plans for higher PA prices in Q3.
PBT prices continued to drift lower during the second quarter with sales of the polymer badly hit by the economic slowdown. Producers were forced to grant concessions to converters of up to €100/tonne over the entire three-month period.
Material availability is well balanced with the lower level of demand after production cutbacks. Demand is still generally very weak but there were signs of a modest sales revival towards the end of the period, albeit from a very low level.
The downward trend for PBT prices may be bottoming out as the monthly contract prices for key PBT feedstocks, butanediol (BDO) and DMT, have both increased sharply in recent months. PBT supply is also tighter.