Benzene reports are published weekly by ICIS in Asia, Europe and the US, with contract and spot price assessments, market news and analysis.
Benzene forecast reports for all three regions are published on a monthly basis, covering the market up to one year ahead. Monthly forecast reports are also available for the Styrene market.
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Benzene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Benzene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Benzene marketplace.
Price Reporting – More information about the price reports we publish on Benzene
Independent price assessments and market coverage by region
Price forecasts - Concise monthly forward-looking market outlook reports, detailing prices, supply & demand and trade for the next 12 months.
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Price History – More information about the historical price data we publish on Benzene
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News & analysis
News & Analysis - News & market analysis specifically relating to Benzene
Breaking news of latest developments affecting the markets.
Insight and analysis of factors driving prices.
Benzene: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2017
Availability in the region could continue to build if the Asia-US arbitrage continues to stay closed. Shore tank inventories in China would likely also see a further increase after the long holidays in early October. Market participants are expected to keep a close watch on post-holiday demand, as firm consumption will be needed to whittle down the growing inventories in the key Chinese market.
Consumption of benzene in the key Chinese market is expected to remain firm in October after the National Day holidays. End-users have not build up stocks prior to the lull and could therefore step back in to the market from the second half of October onwards. Operating rates at downstream sectors are expected to remain high and demand for benzene to stay firm.
The European market is not expected to have concerns over any supply restrictions at the moment, as all domestic producers are up and running. Moreover, the flow of Indian as well as Brazilian and Middle Eastern imports is steady and this is making the market look balanced to long. The arbitrage window to the US has now closed as the situation in the Gulf Coast area is steadily going back to normal.
European benzene demand is expected to improve in October as some on-going planned maintenance shutdowns in the downstream phenol and methyl di-p-phenylene isocyanate (MDI) markets will be drawing to a close. Demand from the styrene market is also expected to remain reasonable although it is a bit more difficult to anticipate due to some recent production hiccups.
Updated to Q1 2018
US benzene availability is expected to ease heading into the first quarter as refinery operating rates have been rising while margins for on-purpose benzene production units are healthy, suggesting that operators may raise rates in the coming quarter. With demand for feedstock toluene typically slow in the winter months, the spread between benzene and toluene prices is likely to remain at favourable levels for on-purpose benzene production.
No major change is anticipated in US benzene demand in the first quarter. A number of downstream styrene turnarounds are planned for the first quarter but this may be offset by healthy demand for other benzene derivatives such as phenol and methyl di-p-phenylene isocyanate (MDI). Several US refiners will also undergo planned turnarounds in the first quarter, which may help to keep supply and demand for benzene balanced.
News & analysis
Benzene news & analysis
Regional price assessments, published daily or weekly, enabling you to keep track of trading prices, understand price drivers/fluctuations and set a benchmark for contract price settlements. ICIS offers reports on over 180 commodities across the global petrochemical, energy and fertilizer markets. Information covered in our price reports includes:
- Spot and contract price assessments
- Market commentary on trends and developments
- Transactions reported and confirmed
- Plant and production news
Information is accessed online, via the ICIS dashboard service and is configurable to suit your preferences.
Price forecast services
Produced by the ICIS Consulting team, these reports give a robust rolling 12-month price forecast, trade balances and in-depth analysis into where markets are heading – providing a valuable tool to support your short- to medium-term plans.
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ICIS weekly margin reports deliver the detail you need to understand how production costs and prices are affecting margins, enabling you to judge the likely impact on your business and optimise your upstream and downstream business decisions.
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The Supply and Demand Window on the ICIS Dashboard provides a snapshot view of historical and forecast information for supply and demand, production capacity and trade flows – a key tool to help safeguard future investments within the chemicals market.
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ICIS Chemical Business magazine
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Market Studies & Analysis
Supply & Demand Data
An expert view of supply and demand comprising four fully-reconciled databases, giving you access to extensive data for more than 100 markets. Information is included on global and regional trade flows, production, capacity and sources of demand in the short-, medium- and long-term. Data can be downloaded, customised and queried to support your planning requirements and your strategic decisions.
Training & Conferences
ICIS provides specialist training courses across the global petrochemicals, base oils and fertilizers industries. Our training team of industry experts can help you increase your knowledge of the industry and gain the insight and know-how needed to operate and trade effectively.
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Working closely with you to understand your strategies, challenges and ambitions, the ICIS consulting team deliver tailored advice and solutions to suit your unique requirements. With many years’ experience of guiding business leadership teams, we show you how market conditions can make a positive or negative impact on your long-term plans.
ICIS expert consultants can provide your organisation with the insight, intelligence and data needed to build and grow your business in China. We can help you to gain a clear view on the short and long-term supply and demand picture in the chemicals, energy, iron and steel, non-ferrous metals and paper and pulp markets in China.
General Benzene Methodology Consultation read more >
ICIS price assessments are based on information gathered from a wide cross-section of the market, comprising consumers, producers, traders and distributors from more than 250 reporters world-wide. Confirmed deals, verified by both buyer and seller, provide the foundation of our price assessments.
Our in-depth market knowledge drives our specialist focus, as we recognise the importance of individual market dynamics and not a one-size-fits-all approach.
Over 25 years of reporting on key chemicals markets, including Benzene, has brought global recognition of our methodology as being unbiased, authoritative and rigorous in preserving our editorial integrity. Our global network of reporters in Houston, London, Singapore, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Mumbai, Perth and Moscow ensures unrivalled coverage of established and emerging markets.
Benzene is a colourless, refractive liquid with a characteristic aromatic odour. Its vapour is toxic and highly flammable. In cold weather, benzene solidifies to a white crystalline mass. It is slightly soluble in water, miscible with ethyl alcohol, ether, acetone, carbon tetrachloride, carbon disulphide, and glacial acetic acid (GAA).
Benzene is the largest volume aromatic petrochemical used to produce a number of petrochemical intermediates.
Ethylbenzene (EB) is the largest chemical outlet for benzene and nearly all is consumed in the production of styrene.
The second largest outlet for benzene is cumene which is nearly all consumed in phenol production with acetone formed as a coproduct.
The third largest outlet for benzene is cyclohexane (CX) which finds its way primarily into the nylon chain via caprolactam and adipic acid.
The fourth main derivative of benzene is nitrobenzene, which can be used to make aniline.
Benzene is used to make a number of other chemical intermediates such as alkylbenzene used in detergents, maleic anhydride(unsaturated polyester resins) and chlorobenzenes (engineering polymers).
The main sources of benzene are from the steam cracking or catalytic reforming of liquid petroleum feedstocks, primarily naphtha, where the benzene is recovered from the aromatics stream. Other processes are hydrodealkylation (HDA) of toluene and toluene disproportionation (TDP).
ICIS Benzene Price Index
US Benzene Prices were assessed at $2.75 - 2.83 / gal FOB (free on board) in mid June 2015. Downstream US styrene outages have depressed benzene prices whilst at the same time fuel blending demand has raised Prices for Toluene to $2.95-3.08/gal. This change has almost eliminated the spread between the two aromatics in the US for the first half of 2015.