N. American PS prices fall 3 cents in April

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AKRON, OHIO — An April price drop for solid polystyrene resin in North America is featured in this week's Material Insights video.

The 3-cent drop for April was tied in to lower prices for benzene feedstock, which dropped 7 percent between March and April. Higher benzene prices for May could lead to higher resin prices or at least cause prices to stabilize, market sources said. North American PS sales also struggled in the first quarter of 2013, falling 2 percent vs. the year-ago period.

A big PVC merger in Europe also is featured in this week's video. Ineos Group and Solvay SA plan to merge their PVC units into a 50-50 joint venture that would have annual sales of about $5.6 billion. The combined firm would rank as one of the world's three largest PVC makers.

The video wraps up with news of a new player in the plastic additives market. Addivant opened its doors on May 1 in Middlebury, Conn. The firm was formed after private equity firm SK Capital bought Chemtura's antioxidant and UV light stabilizer business for about $200 million in late 2012.