LWC price increases planned for April or May have spread to only a limited degree
If paper manufacturers get their way, buyers in the United Kingdom will pay more for all types of publication paper from 1 July onwards. Higher prices have been unveiled on the British newsprint market, too, with producers having varying ideas about how much more they will charge. At the lower end of the spectrum, suppliers want to institute a mark-up of £25/t, while others are less cautious and seeking much larger hikes. Some manufacturers are expressing their displeasure with their competitors seeking such modest sums. At the same time, others sources reported "measured mark-ups". Yet, all producers agree that newsprint must become more expensive after a lengthy period of low prices.
The LWC market has undergone a full turnaround in the past 12 months. At this time last year, the market was facing weak consumption and surplus supply; now comments about the state of this business are frequently the complete opposite. Today, manufacturers are describing demand as good to extremely strong, with producers' machines running at full speed. Substitution effects from neighbouring markets for SC paper and woodfree coated paper are coming into play here. Buyers also feel that prices will rise and are tending to buy sooner rather than later.
For SC paper price increase announcements are a little smaller than for LWC because of the mark-up carried out at the start of the year, they are often in line with those for newsprint. Suppliers are seeking to tack on a minimum of £25/t, with several producers demanding larger amounts.
Manufacturers continue to describe demand for SC paper as good, although the British SC paper market is not as important as several major Continental European markets.