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ExxonMobil Announces May Polypropylene Margin Increase as Strong Demand and Tight Availability Persists
April 04, 2022

At least one major North American resin producer has stepped out with a Polypropylene (PP) price increase to expand margins in May, which follows a producer push for an April increase and comes amid strong demand from processors and resellers, tight supply availability and higher feedstock Polymer-Grade Propylene (PGP) prices.

In a letter to customers on Monday, ExxonMobil said it would increase prices for all grades of PP resins by $.06/lb ($132/tonne), effective May 1. The company added that the increase is separate from any price change in Propylene Monomer, and from previously announced increases.

ExxonMobil is the first producer to announce an increase for May PP, and follows LyondellBasell's proposed margin enhancing price increase for April at $.04/lb.

March PP contracts have already settled at a $.10/lb increase, following the March PGP contract increase of the same level, which took PGP up to $.72/lb.

The April and May price initiatives also comes as North American PP production and supply availability was dealt a significant blow last week, following two force majeure declarations, one at LyondellBasell's facility in Lake Charlies, Louisiana, and the other from Ineos Olefins & Polymers due to a power outage and manufacturing breakdown at its facility in Carson, California.

Current PP Homopolymer and Copolymer prices reside at $1.02/lb and $1.12/lb, having jumped up $.02/lb last week to match the season's high established earlier in March. Meanwhile, prompt feedstock PGP spot levels also increased on Monday with a couple of confirmed April transactions at $.73/lb, which was above business done at last week's high of $.68/lb.

By Brian Balboa for The Plastic Exchange.

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