Celanese Hikes Vinyl Acetate Monomer & Acetic Acid Prices - Analyst Blog

Chemical and advanced materials maker, Celanese CorporationCE has announced an increase in the prices of list and off-list selling prices for vinyl acetate monomer in Europe by EUR75 per metric ton (MT) and in Asia outside China by $30 per MT. The price increases will be effective from Jun 1, 2015, or as contracts permit.

The company will also increase list and off-list selling prices for acetic acid in China due to the recent rapid increase and continued volatility in China m ethanol prices . The price increase of RMB 150 per MT will be effective immediately, or as contracts allow.

Celanese released first-quarter 2015 results last month. The company's first-quarter adjusted earnings (excluding one-time items) of $1.72 per share jumped 29.3% from $1.33 per share reported in the year-ago quarter. The results also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.32 per share by a wide margin.

Earnings from continued operations (as reported) came in at $1.53 per share in the first quarter of 2015, surging roughly 22.4% from $1.25 per share posted in the prior-year quarter. The results were supported by the company's productivity actions.

Sales of $1,450 million in the reported quarter were down roughly 15% year over year and missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,647 million.

Consolidated segment income margin for first-quarter 2015 increased to 24.1%, up 600 basis points (bps) year over year. The rise was driven by strong commercial performance in all the company's segments despite the uncertain macroeconomic environment and volatile currency markets.

Celanese currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Other stocks worth considering in the diversified chemical space include LyondellBasell Industries N.V. LYB , Trecora Resources TREC and Arkema S.A. ARKAY . While LyondellBasell and Trecora Resources carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Arkema holds a Zacks Rank #2.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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