Paraffin wax Prices, markets & analysis
ICIS offers trusted and reliable market intelligence for those buying or selling Paraffin wax or related products in the global Paraffin wax 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
Paraffin wax Overview Transcript
There are many uses for paraffin wax from cosmetics through to packaging. However the production of candles is by far the largest consuming sector for paraffin wax.
Paraffin wax is derived from slack wax, a by-product of Group 1 Base Oil production and is classified according to oil content, melting point and the amount of processing put in. There is little investment in Group 1 Base Oils production because of shifting global demand patterns.
Moreover paraffin wax faces challenges from possible natural alternatives such as soy and palm oil.
The price of paraffin wax can be influenced by upstream factors such as crude oil price fluctuations. In addition, demand for paraffin wax and candles can be influenced by wider economic concerns. These challenges along side the global nature of the business make it a complex market place.
Anyone involved in the paraffin wax business who wants to understand what is happening should read the ICIS report .
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Paraffin wax news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Paraffin wax analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Paraffin wax marketplace.
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News & Analysis - News & market analysis specifically relating to Paraffin wax
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Paraffin wax: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2014
Asia paraffin wax will be slowing down in the fourth quarter as buyers have completed their raw material purchases for the pre-Christmas manufacturing of candles. Weakening demand is likely to put downward pressure on prices while supply remains ample. Meanwhile, an additional 50,000 tonne/year wax plant will be starting up in India, which is likely reduce import demand.
European fully refined paraffin wax prices are expected to remain fairly stable through the fourth quarter as good demand during the seasonal peak for candle production balances out the bearish influence of weak feedstock prices. Declining vacuum gasoil prices are more likely to pull down slack wax and semi-refined wax prices, however, with the latter being further burdened by a severe oversupply on the Poland-Belarus border.
US paraffin wax spot prices have remained largely steady in Q4, but market chatter about tightening supply has dominated the quarter. The largest producer is eliminating two wax streams, causing some market participants to expect tight supply in Q4. Buyers have remained quiet about the supply situation, with large candle buyers expected to move to increased use of triglyceride waxes if needed in 2015. Shrinking Group I base oil production continues to promote investigation of alternative options for wax production, with gas-to-liquids processes gaining attention for 2015.
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Paraffin Wax Methodology
About Paraffin wax
Paraffin waxes are classified according to oil content, melting point, and the amount of processing put in. At room temperature paraffin wax can be found in a solid state, when it reaches 37°C and above the wax will begin to enter a liquid phase.
At the simplest level, slack wax, a byproduct of base oil refining, is the feedstock from which different grades of more sophisticated waxes are produced. Fully refined waxes are white, odourless and tasteless, and have less than 0.5% oil content.
They are widely used for candle making and in the packaging industry as wax coatings for paper, film and foil substrates including corrugated board, cups and container. Waxes are marketed in either liquid or solid state.
Other common uses are for corrugated boxes, waxed papers, frozen food cartons and wrappers, paper cups, candles, cosmetics, rubber antioxidants, lumber end seal, adhesives, protective coatings, food additives, cheese dipping, crayons, moisture barriers, polishes, modelling clay, plus many others.