Downward pricing trends continued in September for solid polystyrene and PET bottle resins in North America.
Solid PS prices plunged an average of 9 cents per pound, marking the second straight monthly decline for that material. Prices had slipped an average of 2 cents per pound in August, holding to a number that was pre-announced by PS makers Americas Styrenics and Styrolution.
The September PS price drop was more extreme, however, as the material followed benzene feedstock prices, which slipped 79 cents per gallon to finish September at $2.01 — a drop of about 28 percent.
If all 54 Senate Republicans vote for the bill, supporters will need six Democrats to reach the 60 votes needed for approval.
Heitkamp and other supporters of lifting the ban sought to gain Democratic votes by including a provision that would allow the president to halt exports if he deemed they were not in the interest of national security. Heitcamp said that mechanism was put into the legislation to respond to concerns about runaway gasoline prices.
The White House said on Wednesday it does not support Senate efforts to reverse the ban even though Heitkamp's bill contains the provision.
However, Heitkamp said she and others were talking with senior White House officials on a regular basis. She said she was confident President Barack Obama could support a balanced bill doing away with the ban if it included measures such as backing renewable energy like solar and wind power.
Pulling that off could be difficult. Adding a measure to make tax breaks for renewables permanent could cause other senators in states heavily reliant on coal sales to back away from the bill.
Heitkamp said it was premature to discuss what kinds of deals could be made to eventually pass the bill, but that some of the issues on the table could be "surprising."
Oil producers say the domestic drilling boom will eventually be choked if the trade restriction, which Congress passed in 1975 after the Arab oil embargo, is not lifted.
Opponents to lifting the ban say it could hurt employment in oil refining and shipbuilding and damage the environment.