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Friday, March 24, 2023

US benzene, toluene at two-month highs on energy, reformer issues

US benzene and toluene markets rose to two-month highs Tuesday to $2.35/gal ($703/mt) FOB US Gulf Coast and $2.25/gal ($684/mt) FOB USG, respectively.

Sources attributed gains in both markets to stronger energy as NYMEX December crude settled $1.76 higher at $47.90/b and NYMEX December RBOB gasoline was 7.02 cents higher at $1.4455/gal.

Talk of a reformer shutdown also boosted sentiment and resulted in higher pricing, sources said.

A reformer issue would affect toluene mostly, with the impact on benzene pricing likely to be minimal, a couple of sources said.

US benzene pricing was last seen at that level August 17, while toluene was last seen at that level August 18, based on Platts data.

Day over day, benzene pricing rose 16 cents/gal and toluene pricing rose 8 cents/gal.

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