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Petrochemicals

Factbox: Braskem offers credit line for customers struggling with coronavirus fallout

Commodities | Energy | Metals | Petrochemicals | Shipping

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Factbox: Braskem offers credit line for customers struggling with coronavirus fallout

Houston — Brazilian petrochemical producer Braskem will offer its Brazilian clients a credit line of nearly $200 million to help them cope with fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

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The credit will be available for 60 days starting in April, Braskem said late Friday in a statement. The credit is directed to the purchase of plastic resins, caustic soda and specialty chemicals. Braskem said clients will be able to use the credit line to buy more volumes with greater flexibility in billing terms. Credit access will be limited to $120,000 per client.

"This measure is directed toward clients with lower credit capacity," said Edison Terra, Braskem's vice president for olefins and polyolefins in South America. "This helps not only the ones who are producing more plastic products to combat the coronavirus pandemic, but also the ones who are suffering with lower demand."

In aromatics, the April benzene contract price partially settled Monday at 121 cents/gal, market participants said, a 53% drop from the March CP of 257 cents/gal, reflecting how the energy complex has been battered by demand destruction and coronavirus uncertainty.

INFRASTRUCTURE

**Inter Pipeline will consider possible partnerships for its Alberta petrochemical complex under construction since early 2018.

**Pembina Pipeline plans to defer its investment with Kuwait's Petrochemical Industries to build an Alberta PDH plant and polypropylene unit.

**Dow Chemical will expand hand sanitizer production to produce more than 200 mt, the equivalent of 880,000 eight-ounce bottles.

**LyondellBasell says it will slow construction of its propylene oxide and tertiary butyl alcohol plant near Houston due to the coronavirus pandemic.

PRICES

Olefins

**Non-LST ethane prices rose 16% on Monday to 10.75 cents/gal, up from an all-time low of 9.25 cents/gal on Friday.

**Spot April ethylene prices fell 0.375 cent to a new floor of 9.25 cents/lb Mont Belvieu on Monday, the lowest point since S&P Global Platts began assessing spot ethylene in 2004. The FD Choctaw price was flat at 8 cents/lb.

**Non-LST propane prices fell 4.6% to 25.50 cents/gal on Monday, down from 26.75 cents/gal on Friday.

**April spot polymer-grade propylene prices rose 6% to 19.75 cents/lb FD USG on Monday, up from 18.675 cents/lb FD USG on Friday; refinery-grade propylene held at 10 cents/lb FD USG.

Polymers

**Export LDPE prices held stable Monday at $937-$959/mt (42.5-43.5 cents/lb) FAS Houston, with railcar pricing talked tight at 40 cents/lb range.

**Export HDPE blowmolding prices were unchanged at $717-$739/mt (32.5-33.5 cents/lb) FAS Houston, with railcar pricing discussed at 30 cents/lb.

**Export LLDPE butene prices were static at $717-$739/mt (32.5-33.5 cents/lb) FAS Houston, based on railcar values talked at 30 cents/lb.

**Export homopolymer PP prices were flat on the day at $1,058/mt FAS Houston

Aromatics

**US MTBE FOB USG prices rose 7.55 cents/gal to 63.55 cents/gal FOB USG.

**April US methanol FOB USG prices fell 3 cents/gal to 65 cents/gal FOB USG.

US front-month benzene

**April benzene closed down 19 cents/gal Monday at 87 cents/gal DDP USG, while May benzene dropped 15 cents/gal to 93 cents/gal DDP USG. Monday marked the first day DDP USG benzene dropped below the $1/gal mark.

**April styrene monomer closed at $405/mt FOB USG on Monday, down $10/mt from Friday. May styrene fell $40/mt day on day to close at $375/mt FOB USG.

**US front- and forward-month styrene monomer prices

**FOB USG April and May toluene fell 2 cents/gal to 98 cents/gal.

**FOB USG April and May mixed xylenes rose 2 cents/gal to 102 cents/gal.

**FOB USG paraxylene prices fell $25/mt, or 4.8%, to $490/mt on Monday.

**USGC standard naphtha barge prices fell 5.8% to 35.43 cents/gal, down from 37.61 cents/gal on Friday; USGC light straight-run naphtha prices fell 9.8% to 32.25 cents/gal, down from 35.75 cents/gal on Friday.

**NYMEX RBOB settled at 58.55 cents/gal, up 1.18 cents from Friday.