Oxo-alcohols Prices, markets & analysis
If you buy or sell Oxo-alcohols or related products, you need up-to-date global pricing data and the background information to help you understand it.
Our network of price reporters across Asia, Europe and the US enables us to deliver this. We publish their insights in our comprehensive daily and weekly price reports, plus we offer the news and analysis you need to put pricing information into context.
Oxo-alcohols are products that are derived from olefins, primarily propylene. Products like butanol (NBA) and iso-butanol (IBA) and 2-ethyl hexanol (2EH) are used as solvents and plasticisers.
They are pre-cursors of products that are used in the paints and coating industries as well as the manufacture of flexible polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
Key drivers for the oxo-alcohols market are construction industry, whether it be home construction or commercial construction industry, appliance industry and the automotive products industry; industry categories that need permeable coating material.
The market currently is recovering form recession and people are anticipating that the market for oxo-alcohols will continue to grow for the next several years as various industries continue to recover from the downturn.
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Oxo-alcohols news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Oxo-alcohols analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Oxo-alcohols marketplace.
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Oxo-alcohols: Market overview
Updated to Q2 2015
In the US, a stabilised oxo-alcohols market could be positioned for price rises in the second quarter on sentiment that prices have bottomed and that a seasonal uptick in demand is around the corner. Prices of 2-ethylhexanol (2-EH), n-butanol (NBA) and isobutanol (IBA) are at low levels not seen since 2009-2010 and seem primed to augment demand that comes during the spring and summer coatings season. But worries that the housing market – a key end-user of oxo-alcohols – may be sputtering are partially offsetting optimism about the US GDP growth accelerating through the end of 2015.
Short supply fundamentals in east Asia – but outside of China – are expected to continue until May, as several key plants go on their scheduled turnarounds in Japan and Malaysia. China’s supply is expected to increase after two key plants – Jiangsu Huachang and Yantai Wanhua – start up by the end of June, with most China-based buyers taking on a bearish sentiment. Import activities into China are likely to come to a halt if yuan-denominated prices continue their downward trend. Demand from other parts of east Asia is expected to remain steady, with a short increase expected after June because of the typical peak season for end-products.
European oxo-alcohols producers are likely to try to gain margin in the second quarter of the year after the considerable price falls in Q1. Demand is expected to increase in the spring. The balance will largely depend on the decision of Romanian producer Oltchim about whether or not to continue its oxo-alcohols production.
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Oxo Alcohols Methodology
The oxo-alcohols chain consists of n-butanol (NBA), isobutanol (IBA), and 2-ethylhexanol (2-EH). Around 50% of 2-EH is used to make plasticisers, mainly dioctyl phthalate (DOP).
DOP is a plasticiser, which is material used for plastic, typically polyvinyl chloride (PVC) to enhance its flexibility and malleability. Di-isononyl phthalate (DINP) is also a plasticiser.
NBA is a feedstock for butyl acrylate and methacrylate, butanol-based glycol ethers, butyl acetate (butac), and some plasticisers. IBA is used as a solvent for nitrocellulose, in hydraulic fluids, and as a resin modifier.
Key drivers for oxo-alcohols are the construction industry (home and commercial), the appliance industry, the automotive industry and industries that need imperial coating material.
In addition, the alcohols NBA, IBA, and 2-EH have some uses just as solvents.
Health risks include irritation to the eyes, skin and respiratory tracks when inhaled.
In Europe DOP has been re-labelled to a higher-risk category, featuring the skull and crossbones on packaging and machinery where it is used. DINP remains in the category below but is under investigation.