Styrene butadiene rubber Prices, markets & analysis
ICIS offers trusted and reliable market intelligence for those buying or selling Styrene butadiene rubber or related products in the global Styrene butadiene rubber 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.
Styrene butadiene rubber Overview Transcript
Styrene butadiene rubber or SBR in short is a synthetic rubber; it is used in the production of tyres in the automotive sector, as well as in the footwear industry. It is traded widely in Asia. The major producers are in Northeast Asia, South Korea, China, Taiwan, and Japan.
It is a spot product that is traded by traders as well as by distributors, consumers and producers.
Its prices are driven primarily by supply and demand. If there is more demand than supply, then obviously prices will rise.
In Asia the SBR prices are to a large extent determined by the natural rubber prices. This is because both natural rubber and SBR are substitutes used in the production of tyres, Which ever goes up or comes down will impact each other.
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Styrene butadiene rubber: Market overview
The global styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) market is expected to be soft for the first quarter of the year 2014 as demand is expected to remain subdued in all three regions amid a slow global economy.
In Asia, the downstream tyre makers are operating their plants at reduced rates, given the sluggish global automotive industry.
The key China market will be closed for at least one week in February for the Lunar New Year holidays which start on 31 January. Several tyre factories in China are expected to shut for at least one to two weeks for the festive holidays, which will impact on demand for SBR.
In Europe, tyre replacement sales are expected to remain subdued. The main feedstock butadiene (BD) prices have been volatile, which has been a thorn in the side for many SBR market players.
The US SBR outlook for the year is expected to be muted. Demand for replacement tyres, which account for about 80% of the tyre market, has been soft, but sources said the market is stabilising.
Updated to mid-Jan 2014
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Styrene Butadiene Rubber Methodology
About Styrene butadiene rubber
Styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) is similar to natural rubber in its resistance to mild solvents and chemicals and, like natural rubber, can be successfully bonded to many materials. No acute health hazards are known or expected for SBR.
Styrene butadiene rubber is the largest volume synthetic rubber. With over 70% of SBR being consumed in the manufacture of tyres and tyre products, demand is very much dependent on this sector.
There are two major types of styrene butadiene rubber – emulsion SBR and solution SBR. There is a trend towards the increasing use of solution SBR as it is able to meet the increasingly stringent specifications in the manufacture of high performance tyres.
SBR is produced by the copolymerisation of butadiene with styrene in the approximate proportion of 3:1 by weight.
Emulsion SBR is produced using a continuous process while solution SBR can be produced on both continuous and batch processes.