IHS Chemical Week

Economics :: Prices

Tighter Ethylene Market Turns Margins Positive Again

11:31 PM MDT | March 22, 2009 | Lindsey Bewley

U.S. ethylene contract prices settled up 0.5 cts/lb in February, turning average ethylene margins positive for the first time since December 2008. Average ethylene margins were 4 cts/lb for February compared with -2 cts/lb for January. Contract ethylene margins improved by 5 cts/lb, to 7 cts/lb in February, and spot margins improved by 8 cts/lb, to 2 cts/lb, “reflecting 6.5 cts/lb ethane margins but negative margins for most other feedstocks,” says David Begleiter, analyst at Deutsche Bank (New York). Producers had hoped to raise last month’s...

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