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Dow Chemical stops all new orders for Europe December LLDPE

December 14/2010

(ICIS) -- Dow Chemical has stopped all fresh orders in Europe for linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) for December, a company source said on Tuesday. We are seeing a very strong December and put an order-stop on new sales yesterday (13 December), said the source. Dow Chemical is the leading C8 LLDPE manufacturer in Europe.

Sales of polyethylene (PE) last month were also very strong, according to several sources with access to sales data. For many producers, November was the best month for sales in 2010, although LLDPE volumes this year have not been running higher than 2009. LLDPE prices in December were increasing by about ?30/tonne ($40/tonne) compared with November.

It was not clear whether the strong demand for PE in December was a result of improved downstream demand, or whether converters bought extra volumes for stock, as a buffer against higher prices in January.

The ethylene contract for January was widely expected to rise by a hefty amount, as crude oil and naphtha prices rose and the euro continued weaken against the US dollar. Producers were expected to recover any increase in the ethylene contract price in higher PE prices in January.

The December ethylene monomer contract price rose by ?27/tonne from November to ?1,005/tonne FD NWE.


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