SEATTLE (polymers.in): Oil prices surged more than 4% on Tuesday, after a Reuters story raised expectations that the OPEC nations will agree production cuts. Oil prices were lower in volatile trading on Wednesday as the market weighed Russia's comments about a possible meeting with Saudi Arabia that renewed hopes for a production freeze deal against a bigger-than-expected U.S. crude inventory build. Oil prices fell in early trading on Friday as the strengthening U.S. dollar snuffed out rekindled hopes that OPEC might agree production cuts.
US shale oil production declines over the past year and a half are forecast to slow to 20,000 b/d in December, down from a 30,000 b/d drop in November, US Energy Information Administration data showed Monday. The country currently produces 600,000 b/d, state-run National Oil Corp. Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said in a statement. It’s seeking to boost output to 900,000 b/d by the end of 2016 and about 1.1 million barrels next year, he said.
According to The Plastics Exchange, spot resin trading slowed considerably last week. Trump’s win spooked the resin export market, as the U.S. dollar spiked higher while energy prices continued to sink, driving international buyers away.
China’s polyolefin futures prices closed sharply lower for the second consecutive session this week amid panic selling, market sources said on Tuesday. The sharp fall in prices could be due to outflows of speculative funds and the winding down of long positions in the market, industry sources said.
This week, PP prices dropped in Far East and South East Asia regions. Prices fell as buying trends weakened significantly in the region. CFR Far East Asia prices of PP raffia and PP injection were assessed down at the USD 1030/mt levels, a week on week fall of $10/mt. Despite weaker upstream naphtha and ethylene values, HDPE prices inched up in some parts of South Asia. The price rise was attributed to firmer import offers from overseas producers in the region.
Egypt will look for lucrative long-term deals to import refined products or turn to spot tenders with international traders to meet the vacuum left by Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco)'s reported decision to indefinitely suspend its supply arrangement with the country, according to analysts.
In Turkey, the local PVC market has been following a bullish trend since mid-October, which has been tracked by rapid hikes this week due to deepening tightness both in the local and import market in the face of vivid buying interest. PVC allocations from Europe remained severely tight and prompt supply diminished even further this week. In addition, good demand in the Chinese market reinforced the strong sentiment and kept US sellers firm on their offers to Turkey.
MEG price rose to the fresh high within the year with domestic assessment up 195 yuan/mt to 6,210 yuan/mt and CFR China assessment up $21/mt to $736/mt Thursday. The sharp decline in tank inventory contributed the most to the rise. Despite bearish upstream ethylene values, EDC and VCM prices climbed this week in Asia. Reports of strong buying trends and firmer downstream PVC rates together pushed prices higher in Asia.
ExxonMobil has begun construction of a polyethylene (PE) expansion project at its site in Beaumont, Texas, that will increase capacity there by 65%, the company said on Monday. LyondellBasell expects to take a fluid catalytic cracker (FCC) and one of its crude units down for maintenance next year at its refinery in Houston, the Dutch producer said on Monday.
A Polymerupdate source in Malaysia informed that the company has planned to shut its plant in mid-December 2016 for a period of around 3 weeks and will shut gain in mid-February 2017 for around 1 week.
A Polymerupdate source in Thailand informed that the unit was taken off-line early this week. The planned maintenance is expected to remain in force for around 15 days.
The source said, that the company has undertaken an emergency shutdown at the plant on November 14, 2016 owing to a technical glitch. The plant is expected to restart by end-November/early December 2016.