S&P Global Platts proposes to launch three new US East Coast polyethylene assessments

S&P Global Platts is soliciting industry feedback on a proposal to launch three new spot FAS US East Coast (USEC) polyethylene assessments, effective Feb. 1, 2022, to provide transparency into the growing export market out of this region.

Over the past few years Platts has observed a sustained growth in polyethylene exports out of the US and a geographical diversification of ports able to handle these exports. US EC ports in particular have been developing packaging and logistical infrastructure and building storage facilities to provide alternative export routes to polymer exporters to Europe, Africa, Latin America and other destinations. Charleston and Savannah are currently estimated to be in the top five polymer exporting ports in the US.

Under this proposal, Platts would start assessing on a daily basis high-density polyethylene blowmolding (HDPE), general purpose low-density polyethylene (LDPE G-P) and butene linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE).

The new assessments would reflect spot values of bagged PE loading 3-30 days forward FAS USEC, normalized to ports of Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina. The assessments would reflect tradable value for typical volumes of 250 mt and larger in a single transaction.

The new assessments would be calculated as net forwards from the equivalent FOB Houston prices, taking into account prevailing railcar and bagging costs. Railcar and bagging pricing may also change as the market evolves.

As the spot liquidity in the region increases, Platts may also consider spot market indications, based on bids, offers, trades and indicative values pertaining specifically to the US East Coast. Platts would consult the market on any future changes through its usual means of communications.

The physical properties of the new PE assessments would mirror the specifications of the US Gulf Coast assessments as follows:

Product Grade MFI

LDPE GP 1.8-2.5

LLDPE Butene-1 1

HDPE Blowmolding 0.25

All assessments are timestamped at 1.30 pm Central Time and 2.30 Eastern Standard Time.

Alongside the new daily assessments Platts would also start publishing relevant monthly and weekly averages.

The new assessments would complement Platts existing suite of polyethylene assessments in the US Gulf. The full list and description of these assessments can be found in the US petrochemicals specifications guide: https://www.spglobal.com/platts/PlattsContent/_assets/_files/en/our-methodology/methodology-specifications/americas-petrochemicals.pdf.

Please send any comments and questions to petchems@spglobal.com with a copy to pricegroup@spglobal.com. Feedback must be received by Dec. 23, 2021.

For written comments, please provide a clear indication if they are not intended for publication by Platts for public viewing. Platts will consider all comments received and will make comments not marked as confidential available upon request.