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Styrene acrylonitrile Overview Transcript
Styrene acrylonitrile or SAN is a transparent resin made from styrene and acrylonitrile.
SAN is used to make consumable items like cigarette lighters, tooth brush holders and trays in refrigerators. It’s also used to make fan-blades and other items requiring transparency.
China is the main users of SAN in Asia, given its large manufacturing base and position as a leading exporter of finished goods.
SAN usage is expected to grow as demand for consumer items increases each year. Domestic demand in China has become an important outlet for SAN in Asia, as local demand for finished goods and consumer items is set to grow strongly over the next several years.
The market in Asia is essentially spot, with demand and supply conditions often moving prices, although speculation does often accentuate these price movements.
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Movements in feedstock styrene and acrylonitrile (ACN) have largely driven styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) prices throughout the period from May to August.
ACN fell €95-100/tonne in May, with styrene dropping €11/tonne, bringing the May SAN price down by €20-30/tonne. Demand in the month was affected by a spate of public holidays across Europe.
In June, SAN prices rose €15/tonne, reflecting the €14/tonne and €15-17/tonne increases in the respective June styrene and ACN feedstock prices. Demand was better than the previous month of May, which saw a drop caused by a spate of public holidays across Europe.
Both buyers and sellers were satisfied with demand for June and July, which was not as high as some had hoped, but also did not decline towards the end of July. Demand was expected to drop ahead of the traditional August summer holiday period, but stayed stable, possibly because of stronger demand from the home appliances and white goods sectors offsetting declines in other consumer markets.
Talks for August prices will focus on the increase in styrene and the anticipated rise in ACN on the back of an increase in propylene prices in August.
Updated to mid-August 2013
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