Polypropylene resin prices have increased for the fifth consecutive month.
North American PP prices ticked up an average of a half cent per pound in October, according to market sources contacted by Plastics News.
Prices were up 3 cents in September and now have moved up a total of 14.5 cents since June.
The October increase was connected to higher prices for polymer-grade propylene (PGP) feedstock. Supplies of both PP resin and PGP have been impacted by a series of storms that have hit the U.S. Gulf Coast — especially near Lake Charles, La. — since late August. Supplies of both materials now are improving, according to Scott Newell, a market analyst with Resin Technology Inc. in Fort Worth, Texas.
"There are still pockets of tightness for certain grades, but supply is rebuilding," Newell said in an email.
Regional PP makers had been seeking a 3-cent increase for October. PP production outages previously were seen by LyondellBasell Industries in Lake Charles and by Formosa Plastics Corp. USA in Point Comfort, Texas.
North American PP demand has been flat to slightly negative so far in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic helped sales in medical supplies, personal protection equipment and packaging, but had a negative effect on demand in automotive and in some durable goods applications.