Polyvinyl chloride Prices, markets & analysis
For those looking to keep abreast of the global Polyvinyl chloride market, our independent, unbiased pricing information, news and market analysis is an invaluable resource.
Whether you buy or sell Polyvinyl chloride or related products, you need to know about the prices and the factors driving the prices in the global Polyvinyl chloride 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.
Polyvinyl chloride overview Transcript
Polyvinyl chloride, also known as PVC is a plastic resin. Its feedstocks are chlorine and ethylene. Its main end use for PVC is in the construction industry with pipes and profiles, windows and doors accounting for a large proportion of consumption.
Other applications include the automotive industry, cables and flooring.
The key driver in the market tends to be season led. Spring and summer are the strongest periods of construction activity. Movement in feedstock ethylene and chlorine prices also impact the PVC market as do events in the wider chloralkali chain as producers have to balance the electrochemical unit in order to make the business profitable.
The economy is also a key driver for PVC as downstream construction is strongly linked with GDP. The outlook for the market is unclear, but it is widely agreed that future growth will be largely driven by the emerging economies of Asia, Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe.
Demand in the Eurozone is widely expected to contract as state measures delay public investment in construction. New plants coming on stream in Asia, Middle East, central and Eastern Europe will mean more competition for developed economies.
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Polyvinyl chloride news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Polyvinyl chloride analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Polyvinyl chloride marketplace.
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Upstream of Polyvinyl chloride
Downstream of Polyvinyl chloride
Polyvinyl chloride: Market overview
In the US, the tightness in the polyvinyl chloride (PVC) market seen during the first quarter is expected to ease to some extent, following the end of recent production problems at Axiall’s upstream vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) unit and the expected completion of some PVC maintenance turnarounds.
In Europe and Asia, producers are likely to address margin pressures in the chlorvinyl value chain and in Asia, some production cuts are being considered.
Asian ethylene-based PVC prices are expected to be stable to soft during the second quarter, as weak demand in parts of Asia is likely to be weighed against some resumed export activity to India, once uncertainty surrounding anti-dumping duties has been cleared up.
In Europe, PVC sellers are likely to push to improve chlorvinyl margins, despite relief in upstream ethylene costs over the last few months. This is because of the need to compensate for the erosion on caustic soda prices seen over recent months and supported by good downstream construction activity expected during the second quarter.
Updated to mid-April 2014
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Polyvinyl Chloride Methodology
About Polyvinyl chloride
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) occurs as white, amorphous, odourless powder. It is soluble in nitrobenzene, cyclohexanone, and tetrahydrofuran but insoluble in vinyl chloride. It is resistant to dilute alkalis and acids but is attacked by concentrated nitric and chromic acids.
Two types of PVC homopolymer are produced: rigid resins which are inflexible and hard; and flexible resins which contain a large proportion of plasticiser to make them soft and can be stretched. Products made from rigid PVC include pipe and conduit and roofing tiles.
Flexible PVC finds outlets in wire and cable coating, flooring, coated fabrics and shower curtains. Other outlets for flexible PVC are film and sheet and flooring.
Polymerisation is normally performed at 40-70oC with the vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) in a liquid state under pressure in a batch reactor. Suspension polymerisation is the most common PVC process because the resins produced are the most versatile and suitable for a wide range of applications.
The resin produced from the polymerisation process is hard and brittle and requires conversion into a compound by the incorporation of additives such as plasticisers, modifiers, stabilisers and processing aids before conversion into finished products.
Upstream of Polyvinyl chloride
Downstream of Polyvinyl chloride