European Styrene Finally Tracing Normalcy After Witnessing Record Highs in Q1
- 25-May-2021 5:00 PM
- Journalist: Robert Hume
After breaking all-time records in March this year, European Styrene monomer maintained its strong position in the market on the back of strong demand due to panic buying and snug supply fundamentals. Supply fundamentals further worsened by the unavailability of imports from US and Asia in the early second quarter. Panic buying amid the uncertainty of later Q1 and early Q2 exacerbated the limited availability of Styrene and in turn inflated the prices. Although panic buying has witnessed a slowdown in the beginning of May 2021.
Styrene prices took an unprecedented jump of around 200% with respect to the precious year, prices stood at USD 770 per MT in March 2020 while in 2021 they skyrocketed to USD 2300 per MT in March 2021. Since then, prices have fallen sharply however they are still on the higher side of the spectrum. As of 3rd week of May, prices of Styrene monomer in North Western Europe stood at USD 1440 per MT FOB Rotterdam.
As per ChemAnalyst, ramping up of operating rates of domestic plants in Europe coupled with gradual normalization of imports from US and Asia are likely to soon restore the balance of Styrene in European market. Strong demand from downstream ABS especially from appliances and household market is expected to keep the consumption for styrene high which in turn will keep the prices in strong quadrant.