Prices were mixed with a negative bias in last week's spot resin trading. Trading platform, The Plastics Exchange (TPE) noted that, overall, material flowed freely. Spot commodity resin markets began August strong as producers sought to implement contract price increases. The market proceeded to waver, however, giving back the gains as the increases fell by the wayside and leaving prices fairly flat. After two months of decreases, August contracts for both polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) are rolling steady from July. In September, TPE expects PE producers to again try to enforce the same $0.05/lb increase they have attempted since May. PP contracts, meanwhile, will float with polymer grade propylene (PGP) monomer, which has been under slight pressure.
Energy markets were mixed in less-volatile trading, as October crude oil prices recouped most of the previous week's losses, adding $2.96/bbl to end the week at $85.37/bbl. That close is up nearly $10/bbl from the August low. Natural gas prices shed another $0.029/mmBtu to settle at $3.912/mmBtu on Friday. The crude oil : natural gas price ratio has now expanded to nearly 22:1....