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Spread between Asian and European naphtha hits yearly high

by ChemOrbis Editorial Team -
  • 16/12/2015 (10:14)
Crude oil futures on the NYMEX have retreated by 14% since the beginning of December. Spot naphtha prices followed suit and came down by almost 11% in Europe. The extent of the downturn for Asian naphtha, on the other hand, was somehow limited at 6% on average. This situation caused the gap between the two regions to reach a year high, according to ChemOrbis Price Wizard.

Players in Europe reported subdued demand for spot naphtha, particularly for prompt cargoes. Supply is considered sufficient while traders complain about an ongoing lack of buying interest in the spot naphtha market, which explains the larger size of the decrease seen in the region with respect to Asia.

The Asian market was relatively stronger though, which was due to the gasoline market, where prices had been rallying before showing some signs of softening in the past few days. Plus, availability is reported to be rather tight in the region and demand is said to be healthy. There were some arbitrage cargoes heading to Asia; however, some delays occurred and this continues to support spot naphtha prices in the region.

Although the upstream naphtha and ethylene markets remain relatively less responsive to the losses in crude oil costs across Asia, PE pries in China and Southeast Asia continue to move down due to a lack of buying interest and sufficient supplies.
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