• Sasol’s spot earnings increased this week as oil prices recovered and petrol cracks in particular increases significantly.  Diesel cracks remain negative, however.  FY21 spot earnings are at R5.86/share while we expect a loss of R2.92/share at the LCCP at spot rates.
  • Chemicals prices continue to increase and in Asia ethylene was 2.6% higher.  US ethylene prices were slightly lower than a week ago but cracking margins as well as integrated polyethylene margins remain attractive.  LDPE prices remain strong across all regions and increased significantly in Asia, now trading close to parity with US prices.

Global chemical news

  • Eleven new steam crackers are set to start up in China between now and 2022.  The combined capacity of these crackers exceed 10 million tons of ethylene capacity (link).
  • A number of refineries remain shut following hurricane Laura while refineries were also shut towards the east of Louisiana as a result of Hurricane Sally.  Refining margins moved higher in the USA but remain negative in Asia (link).