July 2000

Trends and Resources

HP Impact: HPImpact: Petrochemical prices: tight market to soften?

According to Dr. Fred Peterson, president of Probe Economics, Inc., he and most other analysts believed that petrochemical and polyolefin pricing would stay flat until about 2002. Economic recovery in..

Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

According to Dr. Fred Peterson, president of Probe Economics, Inc., he and most other analysts believed that petrochemical and polyolefin pricing would stay flat until about 2002. Economic recovery in Asia was expected to finally take hold, and the demand for petrochemicals and polymers would catch up with capacity. Large amounts of capacity had been built in response to good profits in the mid-1990s. However, those forecasts were wrong. Already, ethylene, propylene and styrene margins have shot up, and polyolefin margins are approaching peak levels. Five factors are responsible, according to Dr. Peterson: il prices have doubled Economy in the U.S. and Asia has been strong Rec

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