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High naphtha prices in Europe are continuing to push down demand for the prod

April 21/2011

(ICIS) -- Ongoing high naphtha prices in Europe are continuing to push down demand for the product, sources said on Wednesday. Driven by crude oil price hikes, naphtha reached a 33-month high on 8 April when the range was assessed at USD 1.054-1.062/tonne CIF (cost, insurance and freight) NWE (northwest Europe). While prices have fluctuated slightly since then, they have remained around the high levels last seen in July 2008, when on 21 July the range stood at USD 1.0501.060/tonne.


While Brazil continued to show some interest, there was said to be little demand from the gasoline sector, despite the forthcoming US driving season. The crack has to weaken to open arbs, a trader said. A softer crack spread has a dampening effect on flat prices. The backwardation should disappear first to bring back demand, a second source believed.


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