Strong pound poses tall hurdle for fine paper price hikes on the UK market

Thursday, Dec 17, 2015

The UK market once again plays by its own rules in the fine paper segment. While players in the woodfree uncoated paper segment in continental Europe are in serious talks about the announced January price hikes, the situation in the UK market looks different.

Although paper manufacturers notified customers in the UK of their plans to hike prices as of the beginning of the year, hardly any concrete figures had emerged by the middle of December. Actually, paper manufacturers are comparatively satisfied with selling prices in the UK given that the strong pound guarantees significantly higher sales revenues in euro terms than in continental Europe.Price hikes are therefore likely to be difficult and even manufacturers can be heard saying that the uncoated woodfree market will not see any hikes in the UK.

A widely held view is that prices are currently stable, but there are also comments hinting at a downward trend in prices. There is mention of special end-of-year rebates; other sources indicate price reductions of up to £20 per tonne for deliveries taking place in November and December.

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