Styrene Prices, markets & analysis
For those looking to keep abreast of the global Styrene market, our independent, unbiased pricing information, news and analysis of the Styrene monomer markets is an invaluable resource.
Whether you buy or sell Styrene monomer or related products, you need to know about the prices and the factors driving the prices in the global Styrene 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.
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Styrene Overview Transcript
Styrene is a liquid chemical which is used to manufacture a wide range of products in two basic groups: plastic resins and synthetic rubber. The raw materials for styrene are benzene and ethylene which are produced from naphtha in an integrated plant.
In the plastic group, styrene is made into polystyrene, EPS, ABS, SAN and UPR. These resins then go into consumer electronics, office equipment, toys, and automobiles as well as the packaging construction and infrastructure sectors.
The other group that styrene goes into is synthetic rubber like styrene butadiene rubber, and styrene butadiene latex. These synthetic rubbers are then used to make items like automobile tyres and a host of rubber products.
The main merchant market for styrene is China, which has been growing at a relatively high rate annually. The Asian styrene market is spot driven, with values of most term contracts derived from spot prices.
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Styrene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Styrene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Styrene marketplace.
Price Reporting – More information about the price reports we publish on Styrene
Independent price assessments and market coverage by region
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Price History – More information about the historical price data we publish on Styrene
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Other types of reports we cover for Styrene
Use margin reports to assess the profitability of commodities
News & analysis
News & Analysis - News & market analysis specifically relating to Styrene
Breaking news of latest developments affecting the markets.
Insight and analysis of factors driving prices.
Styrene: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2014
The US styrene monomer (SM) market was on a decline for much of the third quarter and may continue into the fourth quarter, based on expectations of weak demand. Most US suppliers operated at reduced rates in the previous quarter and are continuing doing so in the fourth quarter. Styrolution has taken down its styrene unit in Bayport, Texas for planned maintenance, with a restart scheduled in early November. Westlake Chemical’s styrene plant in Lake Charles, Louisiana remains down due to weak economic conditions within the styrene and feedstock ethylene markets. The company said it has stopped producing styrene because of strong ethylene prices and will instead look to bring ethylene back into the market. Americas Styrenics said a force majeure is still in place at its St James styrene facility in Louisiana until further notice, because of reduced ethylene supply and a force majeure from a key supplier.
The European styrene market is likely to stay bearish for the rest of the year, because of weak downstream demand. There will be limited imports from the US because of shutdowns, although this impact will not be felt until late October or early November. Any upward impact on pricing, however, would be contingent on some derivative recovery. Additionally, the Moerdijk explosion earlier in the year means other propylene oxide (PO) or SM units are running hard to compensate for the PO shortfall. This means they are pushing out more styrene, which is keeping supply more than ample.
Asia’s demand for SM is expected to remain soft in the fourth quarter, as the consumption of styrenic resins will taper off following the conclusion of the third-quarter manufacturing season for exports in October. Consequently, the buying impetus for SM is likely to weaken. However, a number of SM units in the region are shut in October and November either for maintenance or because of weak margins. Hence, supply could tighten and provide some support for prices.
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Styrene news & analysis
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Styrene Asia Weekly Margin Report Methodology
Styrene Europe Margin Report Methodology
Styrene US Margin Report Methodology
Pure styrene is a colourless to yellow, oily liquid that evaporates easily and has a sweet smell. Styrene is highly flammable, forms explosive mixtures in air, is dangerous when exposed to flame, heat or oxidants and on decomposition, emits acrid fumes.
Styrene is mainly used in the manufacture of homopolymers and copolymers. These include polystyrene (PS), expandable polystyrene (EPS), styrene copolymers (such as acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) resins, styrene-acrylonitrile (SAN) and styrene-butadiene latexes), styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR) and unsaturated polyester resins.
Styrene is produced predominately by ethylbenzene (EB)-based technology. EB is first made by the catalytic alkylation of benzene with ethylene and then dehydrogenated to styrene. The coproduction of styrene with propylene oxide (PO) by the PO/SM process had been gaining popularity.