China’s PP market set to move lower
Players in China report that the PP market ended last week on a bearish note and that prices are set to move lower this week, as per the pricing service of ChemOrbis. Prices at the upper end of last week’s import range became increasingly scarce as the week wore on while a major domestic producer announced a significant decrease on its PP prices last Thursday. Buyers remained hesitant to purchase at the end of last week in spite of the significant price declines implemented by sellers, with most buyers commenting that they expect to see some additional downward movement over the near term.
A trader based in Shantou commented, “We received new offers from an Indian producer with $80/ton decreases on Friday. However, we decided not to purchase any material as the producer’s new prices are still slightly higher than our price ideas. Plus, we believe that the market will witness additional declines this week.” Another trader based in Cixi added, “We purchased a small amount of Omani PP raffia for June shipment late last week. We are hesitant about concluding additional deals for now as we believe that more mainstream producers will approach the market with lower prices in the days ahead.”
A Ningbo-based trader who reported concluding some re-export deals for Saudi Arabian homo-PP with buyers in Vietnam stated, “Prices have come down significantly over the past week but we are still waiting for some additional decreases before making any fresh purchases even though our stock levels are a bit on the low side now.” A source at a Saudi Arabian producer complained, “We are having difficulty concluding deals for May even after lowering our prices by $50/ton from April. We are mulling over announcing additional reductions on our prices if trading does not pick up soon.”
Inside China, a major domestic producer announced price reductions of CNY300/ton ($48/ton) on their prices for both homo-PP and PP block copolymer last Thursday. “We reduced our prices in order to speed up our sales in the face of sluggish trading activity and falling market prices,” a producer source told ChemOrbis. A distributor based in Shanghai added, “We are not looking to make any additional purchases for now even though our stock levels are low. Most buyers are sticking to the sidelines for now anticipating additional price declines in the days ahead.”