Butanediol Prices, markets & analysis
With a network of price reporters across Asia, Europe and the US, ICIS is fully equipped to keep you updated on everything that happens in the global Butanediol market, whether you buy or sell Butanediol or related products.
From daily and weekly reports containing price assessments obtained by our network of local reporters, to the news and analysis that put the market into focus, we provide the tools you need to make confident business decisions.
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Butanediol Overview Transcript
Butanediol or BDO is an intermediate product, a colourless and almost odourless viscous liquid.
Around 32% of BDO production goes into engineering thermoplastic PBT, with another 32% going to the manufacture of tetrahydrofuran which is used to make Lycra or spandex.
It is used industrially as a solvent and in the manufacture of some types of plastics and polyurethanes. It ultimately goes into textiles, clothing items items and footwear such as running shoes.
BDO feedstocks are acetylene and formaldyhide, butane via maleic anhydride, butadiene, and propylene oxide.
Around two thirds of the BDO market is captive and more than half off the remaining third is tied up in long-term contracts.
Global demand and pricing is driven by the key Asian market. European pricing has recently reached record levels.
As this is a volatile industry, our readers rely on ICIS four our impartial and accurate reporting.
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Butanediol: Market overview
Updated to Q3 2014
The European butanediol (BDO) market is expected to remain largely stable in the third quarter, with the contracts planned to settle by the end of July.
One aspect likely to feature in negotiations is the drop in the July methanol contract price, which fell by €90/tonne.
The BDO market is mostly supply/demand driven and feedstock price movements have not had a perceptible influence on the BDO price so far, so producers are optimistic that they will secure at least a rollover.
The Asia BDO market will continue to remain under pressure in the third quarter because of the supply glut in China and persistently weak demand from polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) and polytetramethylene ether glycol (PTMEG) sectors.
Demand from China for import cargoes has dwindled as most domestic buyers have opted to make their purchases from local market, given ample supply availability and lower prices.
In North American BDO markets, third quarter contract negotiations will be in full swing in July, with settlements expected in the last week of the month. Producers are seeking increases of as much as 5 cents/lb ($110/tonne), while buyers point to declining feedstock costs as they seek a slight price reduction in third quarter contracts.
Supply and demand are likely to remain balanced in the short term, suggesting price stability, but negotiations for the fourth quarter are likely turn the heat up on producers seeking to maintain and/or improve market share in the presence of additional supply.
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Butanediol (BDO) is a colourless and almost odourless viscous liquid. This hygroscopic diol is soluble in water, alcohols, esters, ketones, glycol ethers and glycol ether acetates; immiscible in aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons and diethylether.
BDO is a chemical intermediate used in the production of polymers, solvents and fine chemicals.
The largest consumer is tetrahydrofuran (THF), used to make polytetramethylene ether glycol (PTMEG) which goes into spandex fibres, urethane elastomers and copolyester ethers. The next largest outlet is polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).
Sizeable quantities of BDO go into the manufacture of gamma-butyrolactone (GBL), which has outlets in electronics and high-performance polymers.