Methyl Methacrylate Prices Show Bullish Trend in the USA and Asia at the End of Q1 2023
- 04-Apr-2023 5:01 PM
- Journalist: S. Jayavikraman
Prices of Methyl Methacrylate followed an upward trend in the USA and Asian markets during the last week of March 2023, backed by improved buying sentiments. Economic recovery in China, steady imports from the exporting country, high inflationary pressure, and rising interest rate by the US Federal Reserve have further impacted the prices of Methyl Methacrylate.
Methyl Methacrylate prices have increased in the Chinese market, backed by improved consumer sentiments. Regarding domestic production costs, operating rates have improved in the wake of increased consumption from the domestic market. Although feedstock Acetone prices have dropped, it had limited bearing over the prices of Methyl Methacrylate. Meanwhile, imports from neighboring South Korea, Japan, and other exporting countries have remained steady, resulting in stable domestic markets or port inventories. In addition, there were no supply hiccups reported by the market participants. On the other side, demand for Methyl Methacrylate from the downstream value chain Polymethyl Methacrylate has gained upward momentum in China's domestic market. Although, the manufacturing activity experienced a slower expansion in March. This can be attributed to the slower-than-expected economic recovery of the regional bellwether China following its reopening from the pandemic. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, there was a slight decrease in the Purchasing Manager Index, from 52.6 to 51.9, in March on the back of a softer rise in output. Thus, prices of Methyl Methacrylate were assessed at USD 1499/ MT with a week-on-week increment of USD 35/MT during the week ending 31st March.
On the other side, Methyl Methacrylate prices showed stagnancy with a marginal increment of around 0.9% in the Singaporean market, backed by the stable demand from the downstream Polymethyl Methacrylate industries, while the material availability has remained firm in the domestic market. Furthermore, the major manufacturer of Methyl Methacrylate, Mitsubishi Chemical Methacrylate (MCM) in Jurong Island, Singapore, with a production capacity of 130,000 MT/year, restarted their Methyl Methacrylate plant in mid-March of 2023. This development is expected to improve the supply of Methyl Methacrylate in the region.
Additionally, it has been observed that in the USA market, the prices of Methyl Methacrylate have increased by USD 55/MT. This rise in prices can be attributed to the high-cost pressure from the feedstock Acetone. Despite this, the demand for Methyl Methacrylate from the downstream Polymethyl Methacrylate industries has remained steady, and market participants have reported stable queries from the end users. Moreover, no major port congestions or supply disruptions have been reported during the given time frame. However, according to sources, the manufacturing activity contracted in March due to the slump in new orders. The Purchasing Manager's Index dropped from 47.7 to 46.3 in March, as compared to the previous month. As a result, the prices of Methyl Methacrylate settled at USD 2065/MT during the previous week.
As per ChemAnalyst, Methyl Methacrylate prices will show an uptrend in the USA and Asian markets due to further expectations of increasing feedstock Acetone prices. At the same time, demand for Methyl Methacrylate from the downstream Polymethyl Methacrylate is likely to grow in the near time.