News Code : 44148

Petrotahlil - US Gulf Coast spot ethylene prices hit new lows Friday due to reduced demand amid the coronavirus pandemic, sources said.

Spot Mont Belvieu ethylene prices were assessed at 9.625 cents/lb, the lowest price since S&P Global Platts began publishing the assessment in July 2004.

April ethylene traded at 9.625 cents/lb MtB-Nova with the front-month March talked flat to April by sources.

Mont Belvieu prices have fallen more than 56% since the year-to-date high of 22 cents/lb seen on January 13.

Spot Choctaw ethylene prices were assessed at 8 cents/lb, the lowest since Platts started the assessment on March 2 and the lowest-ever price recalled by sources.

The April Choctaw-Nova spread traded at minus 1.625 cents, bringing April Choctaw prices 1 cent lower on the day, with the front-month March also talked flat to April by sources. The Choctaw-Nova spread suggests serious length in Louisiana, sources said.

Sources pointed to Sasol's Louisiana 1.5 million mt/year cracker, which has been running while the company's downstream 420,000 mt/year LDPE unit was damaged by a fire in January. Delayed turnarounds for other downstream derivative plants in Louisiana has also applied pressure, one source said.

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