Prices drifted at the tail end of a soft week for the Korea B Grade ethanol market, with participants awaiting fresh local trade information to confirm direction. Indicative September buy side interest was talked around $470/m³ on Friday, with the market waiting to gauge any firm response from regional sellers.
The downtrend in the USD/Real exchange rate has been the key steer for Asian sentiment through this week, with a late week rebound in Brazil’s battered currency lifting sentiment in Asia’s key ethanol resupplier. Stronger-than-expected US economic data on Thursday also provided some support to the world’s largest fuel grade ethanol market amid a sharp rebound in benchmark oil prices.
California LCFS ticket prices also gained on Thursday as buyers focused on Q4 compliance, which will improve economics for Brazilian sugar cane ethanol into the US west coast. Prospects for Chinese demand remain a key steer for the Asian regional market meanwhile. Delayed pre-booked Pakistani ethanol shipments are expected to hit China by mid-September.