Naphtha front-month price for H1-November higher than H1-December

Asia's naphtha front-month price for first-half November at US$454/ton was US$3.25 higher than H1-December's value, the highest backwardation since June 22. Backwardation is an industry term used to describe front-month prices being higher than the following month and this happens when the market is firm. Term and spot demand coupled with fewer Western cargoes arriving in Asia for two straight months have help ended the months of glut, traders said in Reuters. LG Chem was in the spot market seeking cargoes for H2-October and H1-November delivery. The results were not known but traders said prices could have been in premiums for the first time in more than two months. "There are no more discounts for naphtha (in the spot market)," said a Singapore-based trader. Malaysia-based Titan sealed a November 2015 to October 2016 naphtha contract with sellers at a discount of US$7-9/ton to Japan quotes on a cost-and-freight (C&F) basis, traders estimated. Within three weeks starting late August, four term deals spanning 6 and 12 months have been inked by Titan and South Korea's LG Chem, Lotte Chemical and YNCC. India's Reliance Industries sold 35,000 tons of naphtha for October 14-18 loading from Sikka at a premium of US$14-15/ton to Middle East quotes on a free-on-board (FOB) basis. This was similar to the premium it had fetched for a 35,000 ton cargo sold previously for July 24-28 loading.
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