PVC and PET prices have been on the rise in North America since the beginning of the year. Suspension PVC prices have risen by an average of 5 cents/lb and by 3 cents/lb for PET bottle resin in the region as per Plastics News.
The 5 cent PVC rise coupled with a similar attempt for Feb. 1, has PVC buyers on edge, since, historically, PVC prices usually move up no more than 3 cents at a time. But feedstock pressures from ethylene, along with markets tightened by maintenance turnarounds and increased export levels, are changing the rules of the PVC game in early 2010. The size of the January increase and of the February attempt are creating “significant marketing challenges” for downstream PVC users as the market conditions are still not suitable to absorb an increase of this magnitude.
North American PET prices have jumped up 3 cents after making a 5-cent leap in December, mainly due to high costs of feedstock ethylene glycol and paraxylene amid seasonally weak demand. PET demand has been impacted by low growth in its dominant carbonated soft drinks end market, and by lightweighting technology, which has reduced the amount of PET needed per bottle, especially in the bottled water sector.