Naphtha in Asia falls, cracks show marginal recovery amid muted spot deals in South Korea

Outright naphtha price in Asia fell to a 6 week low on Wednesday with cracks recovering marginally to reach a three-session high, but spot deals in South Korea remained muted, as per Reuters. A light grade naphtha cargo for H1-September arrival was bought by Malaysia's Titan at a premium of about 50 cents to Japan spot quotes on a cost-and-freight (C&F) basis. Buyers from South Korea are preferring to defer purchases in anticipation of softer outright prices ahead amid the uncertainty regarding start up date of Formosa's cracker. Formosa, Asia's top naphtha buyer, was to restart its 700,000 tpa No. 1 cracker in H1-August after it was shut following a pipeline fire on May 12. But another outage at the end of July forced it to continue keeping the unit idle. The price for front-month H2-September open spec naphtha fell by over 11 dollars to US$897.50/ton, lowest since June 28.
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