The ICIS Polycarbonate report is published weekly in Asia, Europe and the US and monthly in CIS. These reliable and trustworthy reports can help industry players to keep abreast of the latest news and make informed business decisions.
The price assessments largely focus on general purpose (GP) moulding and GP extrusion grades and cover spot or contract, depending on the region. Market intelligence comprises of regional overviews, upstream news, graphs and production updates.
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Polycarbonate Overview transcript
Polycarbonate is a type of high-specification engineering plastic. Its major markets are in the electronic sectors such as: computers and business equipment, optical media, glazing sheet products and in the automotive industry.
Polycarbonate is naturally transparent, has high strength, toughness, heat resistance and excellent dimensional and colour stability.
The raw material for polycarbonate is bisphenol-A or BPA.
China is the largest importer and user of th resin in Asia given its huge manufacturing base. The market is fast-moving and is over supplied.
The spot market is active and liquid with major sellers from Korea, Taiwan, Japan southeast Asia, the US and Europe.
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Polycarbonate news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Polycarbonate analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Polycarbonate marketplace.
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Polycarbonate: Market overview
Updated to Q2 2016
In Asia, spot polycarbonate (PC) prices are likely to take cues from upstream bisphenol A price movements during the second quarter of 2016. Expectations of steady consumer PC demand for the general-purpose grade, against a backdrop of scheduled plant turnarounds in the region, could provide some market support in the coming quarter.
US PC prices in the second quarter are expected to hold steady or increase slightly in freely negotiated settlements. Sources expect that margin expansion for producers in the first quarter will be somewhat counterbalanced by higher feedstock costs in the second quarter. For feedstock-based formula settlements, prices are set to increase in the second quarter, as crude oil lends support to upstream chemicals.
The European PC market is relatively balanced. There continues to be ample supply and there appears to be potential major structural changes that might affect that underlying situation. On the other hand, healthy demand continues to be sustained, especially in the automotive sector that does not appear to have been hurt by the slowdown in some emerging markets, principally China. There are concerns voiced in some quarters that the economic environment may become less benign, but players on both sides of the market remain relatively upbeat about consumption in the short-term.
The Q2 outlook seems to be towards some firming of prices. Some seasonal increase in demand might play a secondary role, but the main factor is likely to be higher raw material costs. Producers believe they have not been able to restore margins to acceptable levels and will try hard to ensure they suffer no further erosion because of more expensive input costs. However, European producers have not been enjoying as large an export surplus as before and price initiatives may have to take into account competition from imports.
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Polycarbonate resins are tough thermoplastics with major markets in the electrical/electronic sectors such as computer and business equipment, optical discs, glazing and sheet products and in the automotive construction industries.
Other uses include safety helmets and shields, housing components, household appliances, water cooler bottles, lighting fixtures, sporting goods, and aircraft and missile components.
Polycarbonates are long-chain linear polyesters of carbonic acid and dihydric phenols, such as bisphenol-A (BPA). It is hydroscopic, has only fair chemical resistance and is attacked by many organic solvents.
Polycarbonate is naturally transparent, with the ability to transmit light nearly that of glass. It has high strength, heat resistance, and excellent dimensional and colour stability.
Different grades of the polymer are available and the grades vary by strength, clarity, moulding temperatures, service temperatures and other parameters.
Polycarbonate is also used in compounds or blended with other resins such as acrylonitrile-butadiene styrene (ABS) or polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).