Phthalic anhydride Prices, markets & analysis
For those looking to keep abreast of the global Phthalic anhydride market, our independent, unbiased pricing information, news and market analysis is an invaluable resource.
Whether you buy or sell Phthalic anhydride or related products, you need to know about the prices and the factors driving the prices in the global Phthalic anhydride 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.
Phthalic anhydride Overview
Phthalic anhydride (PA) can be produced from two routes, either from the catalytic oxidation of orthoxylene (OX) or from the catalytic oxidation of naphthalene. In Asia the major outlet for PA is used to make phthalate plasticizers such as dioctylphthalate (DOP) which is used in polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
The second largest use of PA is in unsaturated polyester resins (UPR), used to produce fibre-glassed reinforced polyester resins.
World wide growth rates for PA are expected to average just under 3% per year over the next few years. The highest growth rates are in Asia.
Consumption of PA is mainly dependent on the growth in consumption of flexible PVC, which is sensitive to general economic conditions as it is consumed in the construction and automobile industries.
In Asia, the majority of PA cargoes are traded on a spot basis. Key factors that influence prices are movements in feedstock OX, sentiment and market conditions in the downstream DOP segment and the availability of supply.
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Phthalic anhydride news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Phthalic anhydride analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Phthalic anhydride marketplace.
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Independent price assessments and market coverage by region
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Phthalic anhydride: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2015
Asia’s phthalic anhydride (PA) faces an uncertain fourth quarter, especially in southeast Asia, as northeast Asian producers were actively seeking higher prices at the end of the third quarter. Weak market fundamentals may result in limited success in any attempts for price hikes. As such, the spot market may remain largely stable in Asia.
US PA contract prices will follow the feedstock orthoxylene (OX) price trend in the fourth quarter. Prices are expected to soften as OX prices look to be coming down, following mixed xylenes price trends. Demand is expected to remain steady and consistent. PA contract prices typically settle on the delta of the previous month’s OX price. Supply is expected to remain stable despite some producer turnarounds in late September and mid-October.
Not much change in the supply/demand balance is expected in the European PA market in the fourth quarter. PA pricing will largely depend on the OX price, with players hoping for stable levels after some sharp drops last quarter. Demand is expected to slow down in line with the traditional quieting in the fourth quarter.
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Phthalic Anhydride Methodology
About Phthalic anhydride
Phthalic anhydride (PA) occurs as white solid in various forms or clear molten liquid, with an irritating odour. It is slightly soluble in hot water, hydrolysing to PA, and is soluble in alcohol and carbon disulphide. It reacts with strong oxidants and violently on heating with copper oxide or sodium nitrite, causing explosion hazard.
The major outlet for PA, accounting for just over half of production, is in the manufacture of phthalate plasticisers, the main product being dioctyl phthalate (DOP) which is used as a plasticiser in polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
The second largest outlet is in unsaturated polyester resins (UPR) which are usually blended with glass fibres to produce fibreglass-reinforced plastics. Principal markets are construction, marine and transportation.
The third largest outlet is PA-based alkyd resins, which are used in solvent-based coatings for architectural, machinery, furniture and fixture applications.
Small volume uses for PA include the manufacture of dyes and pigments, detergents, herbicides and insecticides, fire retardants, saccharin and polyester resin cross-linking agents.