Global Polybutylene Terephthalate Prices Exhibit Bearish Trend in December 2022
- 27-Dec-2022 11:09 AM
- Journalist: Timothy Greene
In December 2022, the global market's downward trend in Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT) prices were supported by lower feedstock prices and weak downstream demand. Other factors have hampered PBT's market expansion, including the economic slowdown caused by inflation and COVID-19 cases in China and tight monetary policies.
PBT prices in China continued to fall into the penultimate week of the year due to weak demand dynamics from downstream automotive, electrical & electronics, and other derivative industries. According to participant reports, the market's buying sentiment has been rigid due to low consumption rates and few inquiries. In addition, feedstock Butanediol prices have stabilized, putting steady cost pressure on PBT. On December 23, 2022, prices of PBT CFR Shanghai were estimated at USD 3060/MT, representing a weekly decline of approximately 0.6 percent.
As the holiday season approached, participants in the European PBT market reported limited inquiries from downstream automotive, electrical & electronics sectors, which lowered consumer confidence. According to reports from some businesses, the threat of a recession is milder than expected during quarter 4 in Germany. In addition, ample product availability on the ground further declined the price of PBT in the European market. In conclusion, PBT prices in Germany settled last week at USD 4590/MT.
Additionally, the U.S. manufacturing Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI) dropped from 47.7 points to 46.2 points in December 2022, indicating a decline in manufacturing and industrial activity, contributing to a reduction in consumer sentiment in the domestic market over the past few weeks. Furthermore, the approached holiday season further contributed to the weak demand dynamics for several petrochemical commodities. Moreover, demand from the end-user has remained bearish while the material availability has been sufficient, further reducing the PBT prices in the domestic market. Thus, on December 23, 2022, prices of PBT were offered at USD 3150/MT on a FOB New York basis.
The ChemAnalyst says the weak demand from downstream industries will drive down PBT prices this week. However, product prices may rise in January 2023 if downstream demand picks up.