Market overview: Spot resin trading was active, with a high volume of completed transactions recorded, good demand, and higher prices, as buyers scooped up spot material amidst rising monomer costs. The cost-push pressure from those rising monomers will lead to higher resin prices in April. Spot-trading platform The Plastics Exchange (TPE) noted that polyethylene (PE) prices rose a penny on average with some variance between grades. Spot polypropylene (PP) resumed its rally, jumping another $0.015/lb this past week. PE producers secured the $0.02/lb balance of their $0.05/lb increase, $0.03/lb of which was implemented in February. PP contracts dropped $0.05/lb along with March polymer-grade propylene (PGP) contracts, but spot PP prices rallied all month as spot PGP monomer raced higher.
Energy markets traded higher with strong gains in oil and gas. May crude oil futures rallied $3.55/bbl to finish the week at $105.40/bbl. May natural gas futures built on the previous week's gains adding another $0.244/mmBtu to settle at $4.490/mmBtu on Friday. The crude oil : natural gas price ratio was largely unchanged, maintaining a very wide gap of 23.5:1....