1. The market for primary plastics
While the plastics markets were still characterised by markedly decreasing prices at the end of June, they have consolidated again in July. There is still a considerable demand for plastics in all areas of trade and industry. Since the beginning of June , there has been a markedly improved supply in the markets for standard plastics, which has led to price decreases in standard plastics. At the end of June the prices of basic and interim products as well as precursors fell by 75 /t to 95 /t. Subsequent to a brief drop, the mineral oil prices were quoted at USD 111/barrel again in week 29. Hence, the precursor prices and, as a consequence, the plastics prices have also increased again in the medium term. The mineral oil prices could be termed absurd since reasonable prices were still fixed at USD 28/barrel in 12/2003.
The EUWID Price Watch for June shows considerable price reductions in standard plastics. PVC decreased by 10 /t, whereas the other standard plastics were reduced by 40 /t to 90 /t. Hence, the average price of the ten types of plastics listed below was 1445 /t. Thus the plastics price fell short of the previous month's quote by 55 /t. The following prices were quoted in June: LDPE film grade 1480 - 1520 /t, LLDPE film grade 1370 - 1440 /t, HDPE injection moulding 1380 -1430 /t, HDPE blow moulding 1380 - 1430 /t, PS crystal clear 1450 - 1490 /t, PS high impact 1560 - 1620 /t, PP homopolymer 1460 -1570 /t, PP copolymer 1510 - 1620 /t, PVC tube grade 1220 - 1270 /t and PVC film/cables 1320 - 1370 /t. The large supply of PET reduced the PET prices in June, too. The price of PET for packaging was quoted at 1550 - 1630 /t and thus fell short of the previous month's quote by 85 /t on average. Further price decreases are expected for PET.
Standard plastics: The hesitance in purchasing plastics to take advantage of further price decreases is likely to continue in July, too. PVC is benefitting from the boom in the construction industry. However, the price decline also provides a good opportunity to finally build up stocks.
The EUWID quotes for technical plastics increased again in June. While the price rises of PC, POM and PA ranged from 50 /t to 100 /t, PMMA and ABS held their own. Technical plastics are still in great demand. However, the markets continue to be determined by supply shortages. Therefore, the prices are expected to remain stable till the end of 2011. In the EUWID Price Watch for June, technical plastics were quoted at: PMMA crystal clear 2560 -2700 /t, ABS natural 1950 - 2150 /t, ABS white/black 2050-2250 /t, ABS mixed colours 2650-3000 /t, PC crystal clear 3150 -3350 /t, PC GF 3450-3650 /t, POM natural 2500-2550 /t, PA 6 natural 2650 - 2850 /t, PA 6 black 2650 - 2800 /t, PA 6 GF reinforced 3000 - 3100 /t, PA 66 natural 3400 -3500 /t and PA 66 GF 3500 - 3600 /t.
2. The market for secondary plastics
According to the price indices, the June markets for standard plastics were relatively stable. To date, the EUWID Price Watch does not reflect the price decreases observed for certain types of standard plastics during the last two weeks of June. According to plasticker, there have been moderate price reductions in certain types of standard plastics. However, the markets have consolidated again in July. At the end of June, plastics processors postponed their purchases to take advantage of weekly price reductions. The turnover made by plastics processors is considerable. To date, the summer break has not yet had an impact on market behaviour. Industry experts expect prices to remain stable over the summer break, too. Recyclates are still in demand all across Europe and supplement primary plastics extremely beneficially. The markets for secondary plastics prove markedly more stable compared to the primary markets. However, the markets for secondary plastics are getting increasingly independent of the market behaviour in the primary markets - in a positive sense. The purchases from Asia continue to be restrained. Exports to the Far East are of central importance for EU market behaviour; however, they do not determine the markets for secondary plastics.
2.1 EUWID Price Watch
With the exception of PET, the EUWID Price Watch has held its own compared to the previous month. As the demand is still as considerable as last month, this can either be assessed as consolidation or as hesitance with respect to future developments. The behaviour of the PE markets is largely unchanged compared to the previous month. PVC and PS continue to benefit from the boom in the construction industry. There is, again, a sufficient supply of PP and a considerable demand for PP recyclates in the markets. The price decreases in PP that occurred in the last two weeks of June are not reflected by the June Price Watch. In July, the PP prices offset the previous month's price decline.
PET post user: The PET recyclers are relieved because the input prices are normalising. Depending on the grade and the contract period, the prices are reported to have been reduced by up to 180 /t. The decline in the primary prices of PET is reducing bottle prices. In June, the EUWID quotes continued to decline, too, namely by 75 /t for transparent PET and by 50 /t for coloured PET. The bottle prices are reported to further decrease in July, too. The following prices were quoted for used and disposable PET bottles in June: PET transparent 480 - 560 /t and PET coloured 340 - 420 /t.
2.2 plasticker price index
In June the existing plasticker price quotes held their own at the previous month's (i.e. at the May) level. Hence, the price rises ranged from 20 /t to 70 /t, and there were price decreases of 10 /t to 90 /t. The number of offers made in June was approximately equal that of the previous month. According to plasticker, the following price quotes changed by more than +/- 40 /t in June: LDPE regrind -90 /t and PS regrind +70 /t. The forecast of the July Price Watch shows declining prices. However, there are relatively slight price changes compared to June.
Table 1: Prices of standard plastics in plasticker, quoted in /t
*: Supply figures too low to attain statistical significance; 1: equivalent to the grade "post-industrial, mixed colours"; 2: equivalent to K49; 3: equivalent to K59; 4: equivalent to standard, mixed colours; 5: equivalent to the grade "regranulates black".
As far as technical plastics are concerned, the price consolidation announced for June has materialised. However, technical plastics are still at a high level. The number of offers is approximately equal to that of the previous month. In June there were price rises of 30 /t to 140 /t, whereas the price decreases ranged between 40 /t and 120 /t. The following price quotes changed by more than 70 /t: ABS regranulates -120 /t, PC regrind -90 /t, PC regranulates +140 /t, PBT regrind +110 /t, PA 6 regrind +100 /t, PA 6.6 regrind +100 /t, POM regrind +80 /t and POM regranulates - 80 /t. Please note: The first forecast of the July quotes shows markedly decreasing prices; the price decreases in regrind range between 20 /t and 160 /t, and the prices of regranulates will be reduced by 30 /t to 290 /t.
Table 2: Prices of technical plastics in plasticker, quoted in /t
The monthly quotes for secondary plastics, which are updated on an hourly basis, can be calculated using the price lists that are derived from the quotations published in the raw material exchange plasticker (cf. www.plasticker.de). The prices listed in this index are quoted with reservation - as the majority of the quotes submitted are not necessarily equivalent to the sales prices. Furthermore, plasticker does not distinguish between the following grades: transparent, mixed colours or colour-separated. Therefore, the information provided by plasticker may indicate different market behaviour than the prices quoted by EUWID.
The EUWID price quotes refer to bale goods or regrind. The given prices were quoted for business transactions between sorting plants or sales agents or the processing industry, as the case may be. As a rule, the prices refer to quantities in excess of 20 t ex works. The prices attainable in trade can differ considerably from the indicated price range in both directions, depending on the grade of the type of plastic material quoted. The abbreviations used for some grades refer to the list of waste plastics published by the German Federal Association for Secondary Raw Materials and Waste Management (bvse)/Bureau of International Recycling (BIR).
Information about the market for plastics is being presented by:
bvse - Bundesverband Sekundärrohstoffe und Entsorgung e.V.
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