Expandable polystyrene Prices, markets & analysis
For those looking to keep abreast of the global Expandable polystyrene market, our independent, unbiased pricing information, news and market analysis is an invaluable resource.
Whether you buy or sell Expandable polystyrene or related products, you need to know about the prices and the factors driving the prices in the global Expandable polystyrene 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.
Expandable polystyrene Overview
EPS is a rigid cellular form of polystyrene, possessing properties that make it ideal as a packaging mechanism and also in insulation.
The key drivers in the market at in Europe are the upstream cost of feedstock, which is styrene monomer and the level of business in the construction industry downstream.
Each month, the monthly styrene barge contract is the kicking off point for discussions between EPS producers and their customers.
Because the EPS industry is related to the construction sector, it can be very seasonal and that seasonality can be accentuated by long, severe winters which dampen down demand quite considerably. However, the market is a resilient one and prices and consumption can pick up quite strongly.
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Expandable polystyrene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Expandable polystyrene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Expandable polystyrene marketplace.
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News & analysis
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Upstream of Expandable polystyrene
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Expandable polystyrene: Market overview
Updated to Q3 2014
European expandable polystyrene (EPS) price direction for the third quarter is unclear, due to volatility and an uncertain outlook for feedstock costs. Seasonal summer construction activity is driving good EPS demand in the third quarter, though this is likely to be partially offset by the European summer holiday season in July and August.
In the US EPS market, producers are pushing for a price increase of 5 cents/lb in mid-July in an effort to recover an 80 cent/gal increase in feedstock benzene prices. Supply remains somewhat tight heading into the third quarter, following a few outages in the US EPS market. Demand is expected to remain strong into the third quarter, particularly in the construction sector.
In Asia, suppliers anticipate limited improvement in EPS demand in the third quarter. The construction sector in China is expected to slow in the summer months as high temperatures are expected to curtail activities. Furthermore, tight credit conditions and financing issues have hampered construction and infrastructure projects with demand for EPS expected to stay soft. The weak Chinese export of finished goods sector has also reduced consumption of EPS used for packaging.
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Expandable polystyrene news & analysis
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Expandable Polystyrene Methodology
About Expandable polystyrene
Expandable polystyrene (EPS) is a rigid cellular form of polystyrene (PS) with good thermal insulation and shock absorbing properties, high compressive strength, low weight and resistance to moisture.
Building and construction applications are the largest outlet for EPS. Large quantities are used to make insulation foam for closed cavity walls, roofs and floor insulation. EPS foam also finds uses in road construction, bridges, drainage, flotation and sound insulation.
The other main application of EPS is in packaging. Food items such as eggs, meat, fish and poultry can be packed with EPS. The good shock absorbency of EPS makes is suitable for the packaging of delicate electronic goods.
Other uses for EPS include providing protection in crash helmets and as decoration in design work.
Upstream of Expandable polystyrene
Downstream of Expandable polystyrene