The corrugated paper prices increased in the cost of virgin containerboard grades for kraftliner brown, white-top kraftliner and semi chemical fluting grades announced by Metsä and Mondi earlier this month in Europe are in line with John Hall‘s article on Corrugated Prices: Hike Unlikely.
In the U.S. prices will remain level or rise slightly, says Elizabeth Baatz, Economist at Alertdata.com. Average product prices are expected to rise less than 1% during the first quarter of 2013 from the previous quarter, ending at about 2.5% higher than the same quarter in 2011.
Per-unit manufacturing costs are expected to remain relatively flat throughout 2013, with slight upticks in demand strength through the end of 2013. A major driver that could keep global prices up is wood pulp; exploding demand for the raw material from Asia and South America could lead to price increases flirting with 3%, according to IBIS.
Because box maker competition in the U.S. continues to be healthy, price pressures may continue. That could lead to a rollback of the October price increases.
The coming year should be good for larger domestic manufacturers, while smaller firms still may be reeling from having to absorb the price increase, analysts say. In spite of continued projected sagging demand here, the recent price increase could help sustain revenue growth. Globally, the market’s revenue growth in 2013 is projected to be about 6% annually through 2017, according to IBIS.
The full article is available at Corrugated Prices: Hike Unlikely.