Polypropylene Prices fluctuate at the lower end
Polypropylene prices have been plummeting lately. The spot (propylene) monomer prices were significantly lower than contract prices and the global prices for polypropylene have been tailing-off.
According to reports from PCW's Barry, Spartan Polymers' Newell, and The Plastic Exchange's Greenberg, it was observed that polypropylene (PP) prices remained stable in December, mirroring the movement of propylene monomer despite the lack of the expected recovery in monomer tightness. This was attributed to two unplanned shutdowns. Newell was quoted saying that the volatility in the market could persist as long as monomer inventories remained tight. He remarked on the poor end to domestic PP demand in 2023 and anticipated that suppliers might need to reduce production rates further from the low eighties percentile to the mid-seventies to achieve a more balanced supply-demand scenario.
Greenberg, referencing ACC data leading into December, noted that PP suppliers had slightly increased their reactor operations in November to about 80%. He mentioned that exports had shown some strength but still only represented 6.6% of sales. Greenberg further added that domestic processors had reduced their purchases in response to a steep cost-push price increase in November, buying only 96.5% of the trailing 12-month average. He concluded by stating that total production had exceeded weak sales, leading to a build-up in upstream inventories.
According to the article by Procurement Resource, January 2024 witnessed a dip in the global polypropylene price and lower spot monomer costs. Despite stable December prices due to unplanned shutdowns, experts suggest necessary production cuts to resurrect the frail global PP prices.