Epoxy resins Prices, markets & analysis
ICIS offers trusted and reliable market intelligence for those buying or selling Epoxy resins or related products in the global Epoxy resins market.
Our reporters across Asia, Europe and the US keep in touch with local markets, bringing you price assessments, in-depth news and analysis which you can rely on to guide you in your commercial decisions.
Our editor gives their expert view
Epoxy Resins Overview Transcript
Epoxy resins are mainly sold in liquid form and create the key ingredients for specialised adhesives, coatings and composites.
Producers sell epoxy to formulators in various industries and also to their own in-house specialties businesses.
The US has three major producers that compete for market share along with imported material from overseas that comes in iso-containers and drums.
Historically, the US epoxy resins market has been on a rollercoaster ride.
Prices used to be established on a quarterly basis but volatility has caused the market to shift to monthly pricing. Key upstream markets to watch for epoxy resins include benzene, phenol, propylene, bisphenol-A and epichlorohydrin.
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Epoxy resins: Market overview
Asian liquid epoxy resins (LER) prices are likely to be relatively stable in the first quarter of 2014, with most market participants expecting demand to improve in March after the Lunar New Year holiday in early February. Any price gains are likely to be capped, even though producers are facing pressure from firm feedstock costs, as there are no signs of significant demand pick-up in the near term.
US LER is forecast to be steady to possibly higher prices as demand ahead of the coatings season begins late in the quarter. Domestic demand should improve in the first quarter compared with the second half of 2013, and production rates are expected to remain low. This is because the US market remains long following weaker-than-expected demand in 2013 and aggressive selling by Asian producers.
The outlook for European LER prices is mixed and uncertain due to the ongoing effect of cheap imports from Asia since September 2013. Although domestic European producers have sought to combat the imports on a price basis, several sell-side sources say that margins are unsustainably low, and they will be looking to bolster margins whenever possible.
Nevertheless, LER price gains in the US and Europe would most likely be capped as the arbitrage window for Asian imports into the region would open once again if Western suppliers were to raise their prices.
Updated to mid-Jan 2014
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Epoxy Resins Methodology
About Epoxy resins
Epoxy resins are high-performance thermosetting resins that are most commonly produced by reaction of epichlorohydrin and bisphenol-A (BPA). They have excellent adhesion, chemical and heat resistance, and very good electrical insulating properties.
The main applications for epoxy resins are high-performance coatings, electrical/electronic laminates and adhesives, flooring and paving applications with uses in the automotive, construction and aerospace industries.
Coating applications include powder coatings, marine and protective coatings, can and coil coatings, ultra violet (UV) curable coatings and automotive coatings. The construction industry uses epoxy resins because of their excellent adhesion to steel and concrete. In the electronics sector, they can be used to encapsulate electronic components. A growth area is high-performance composites in the aerospace industry.