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US PE prices rise in February

March 04/2011

(ICIS) -- US polyethylene (PE) sellers implemented a portion of their 5 cent/lb ($110/tonne, ?79/tonne) February price increase initiatives with support from rising crude oil and international PE prices, buyers said on Thursday. A large film manufacturer said most of its suppliers raised prices by 3 cents/lb in February, but a couple held the increases until 1 March.

Attention is now shifting to March contract prices, and producers were taking firm initial stances, invoicing an 8 cent/lb increase to customers. The 8 cent/lb increment is made up of the remaining 2 cents/lb held over from February and a separate 6 cent/lb price hike that has been pending since January. Dow Chemical notified its customers on 3 March of an additional 5 cent/lb price initiative for April.

Producers maintained that the February price increases covered all grades, but high density PE (HDPE) prices were relatively soft in February. Brokers had ample availability of competitively priced HDPE spot material. However, prices have firmed in March, sources said.

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