Cumene Prices, markets & analysis
For those looking to keep abreast of the global Cumene market, our independent, unbiased pricing information, news and market analysis is an invaluable resource.
Whether you buy or sell Cumene or related products, you need to know about the prices and the factors driving the prices in the global Cumene market as they happen. Our network of price reporters throughout Asia, Europe and the US provide key local insights. We collate this intelligence into daily and weekly price reports, ensuring you have the up-to-date information you need at all times.
Cumene Overview Transcript
Cumene is a colourless liquid with a distinctive aromatic odour; it is soluble in alcohol and ether but not in water.
Cumene is manufactured via benzene and propylene. The aromatic hydrocarbon is used mostly for the manufacture of phenol and acetone as well as alpha-methyl-styrene or AMS.
It is also utilised as a solvent, and sometimes it’s used as an additive for jet fuel and for textile dies.
But with 98% of cumene going into phenol and acetone production, the market is tied very closely to phenol’s derivatives, particularly bisphenol A or BPA and phenolic resins.
Demand is for cumene is tied to the automotive, transportation, home construction through its derivative phenol. Consequently with these sectors either slow or in decline, cumene’s growth is projected to be just barely 1%
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Cumene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Cumene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Cumene marketplace.
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Cumene: Market overview
The global cumene market remains long by most accounts, and challenged by weak downstream demand for phenol.
Upstream benzene prices increased again in June from May, but dropped precipitously in July before moving up again in August and September. The September hike followed a well-supplied market trend, but benzene supply was poised to tighten in the near term on planned outages, suggesting higher values ahead.
Feedstock refinery-grade propylene (RGP) prices were weaker because of softer demand and weaker polymer-grade propylene (PGP) prices after rising significantly since May.
Additionally, global demand for downstream phenol has not yet strengthened despite talk of improved demand from construction markets.
Also downstream, polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) demand from the flat-panel television-manufacturing market remains centralised in Asia.
Polycarbonate (PC), nylon, epoxy resins and methyl methacrylate (MMA) – through phenol/acetone production – remain tied to the construction, automotive and consumer electronics markets.
Updated to mid-August 2013
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Cumene is a colourless liquid, with characteristic sharp, penetrating, gasoline-like odour. It is insoluble in water but soluble in ethyl alcohol, ether and benzene.
Cumene is the main feedstock for phenol/acetone production and nearly all is used in this way. Demand is driven by market growth for the derivatives of phenol such as bisphenol-A (BPA) and phenolic resins.
Other minor uses for cumene are as a thinner for paints, lacquers and enamels, as a constituent of some petroleum-based solvents and as a component of high octane aviation fuel.
Cumene is utilised in the manufacturing of polymerisation catalysts, catalyst for acrylic and polyester type resins, and as a raw material for peroxides and oxidation catalysts.