Composites/GRP March 2018: Resin and glass fibre prices mostly unchanged / Demand trending upward / Resins could see slight decline in April

Ortho resins prices remained stable in March, despite the fresh rise in the styrene reference contract. Producers had their sights set on Q2, when the quarterly contracts come up for negotiation. Demand from all customer markets was brisk. Even with the many holidays that dot the European calendar in spring, a rise in order activity can be expected.

Glass fibre notations were mostly unchanged in March, as the quarterly contract still had a month to run. All in all, supply is currently adequate and the influx of imports minimal. Hardly any low-priced material is in the market. Here and there, lively demand for sheet with a class A surface boosted orders for the associated chopped strand mats last month. Buyers of direct roving could sometimes find a slightly better deal on the spot market.

At the beginning of April, the styrene reference contract dipped by EUR 125/t. This means that after the recent surge, notations for ortho resins will probably remain stable. While it is also possible that prices could weaken, any decline is likely to be minimal. Spot market movements suggest that maleic acid anhydride may well trend firmer again, due to the market's tightness. Phthalic acid anhydride rose minimally, by EUR 5/t, in March.


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