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Polycarbonate Prices Decline Entering November, as Dark Clouds Shell European Demand
Polycarbonate Prices Decline Entering November, as Dark Clouds Shell European Demand

Polycarbonate Prices Decline Entering November, as Dark Clouds Shell European Demand

  • 14-Nov-2023 3:09 PM
  • Journalist: Peter Schmidt

In the first ten days of November, the price of Polycarbonate remained subdued in the European market, primarily due to reduced demand from the downstream construction sector and anticipated year-end clearance at offer prices.

The decline in Polycarbonate prices was driven by a decrease in construction activity, particularly in the housing sector. Companies reported a downturn in work on residential projects compared to historical trends. In October, civil engineering and commercial activities also contracted, and this trend continued into November. Merchants in the German market observed a decrease in new projects across the construction sector in October. High interest rates and economic uncertainty were identified as significant factors contributing to a lack of investment in the region. Consequently, the diminishing workloads prompted building companies to reduce their workforce numbers during October. This interplay of factors paints a comprehensive picture of the challenges affecting the Polycarbonate market in the European region during this period.

On the supply side, the European market had sufficient material to meet domestic requirements, providing support to the Polycarbonate market. Producers in the Eurozone attempted to secure noticeably higher prices; however, this effort was hindered by numerous imports from overseas and a lack of demand. Despite European plants operating at a significantly slower pace, the market remained saturated with imports. The price of Polycarbonate GP was set at USD 3485/MT on an FD Hamburg basis, according to ChemAnalyst, with a weekly depreciation of 2.2% during the week ending November 10, 2023.

Additionally, the automotive industry continued to weaken, and both the construction and the electronics and electrical (E&E) sectors showed minimal demand for Polycarbonate. The convergence of these factors paints a challenging scenario for Polycarbonate producers in the European market.

Simultaneously, the subdued demand conditions prompted companies to reduce employment levels once again in October. Among the various sectors, construction firms in Germany experienced the most significant decline in workforce numbers, while companies in France reduced headcounts at only a fractional pace. This trend highlights the broader economic challenges faced by businesses, particularly in the construction sector, resulting in adjustments to their workforce to align with current market conditions.

The outlook for Polycarbonate prices in the European market seems to experience a decline in the upcoming weeks. This anticipation is influenced by the weakness observed in the construction industry and the existing low demand from downstream sectors. The interplay of these factors suggests a challenging market environment, prompting expectations of reduced pricing for Polycarbonate as market conditions continue to evolve.

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