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Updated to Q4 2016
The European butadiene (BD) market remained in a tight supply and demand balance throughout the fourth quarter.
Maintenance turnarounds, unplanned issues and ongoing restrictions on crude C4 output kept BD output constrained, but even when availability improved towards the end of the quarter, strong demand from the export sector amid soaring Asian prices kept competition for all available spot tonnes fierce.
The November contract price settled up by €80/tonne, taking the contract price to its highest since November 2014, highlighted the tight market conditions and sustained higher-than-contract spot prices as well as a firmer upstream market.
The strong demand, tight supply situation showed no signs of abating as the market moved into December. Rather the opposite occurred, with Asian demand strengthening further as local derivative demand surged ahead of the Chinese Lunar New Year in late January and in Europe, and the 2017 turnaround season also got off to an early start.
December contract price rolled over at €800/tonne, the impact of softer upstream values being offset by the tight market conditions.
Spot prices, which had begun the quarter in the low €700s/tonne FD NWE, had risen to the mid-€800s by mid-December. Export prices rose from the low $900s/tonne FOB ARA in October, to $1,100/tonne by mid-December.
The ICIS European butadiene (BD) report is a key benchmark report. This means that published numbers are widely referenced in industry contracts. We cover the contract market on a free delivered (FD) northwest European-basis (NWE).
This is a monthly market. It moved from monthly to quarterly in January 2011.
The contract is an industry-agreed price, which means that key producers and consumers exchange price ideas and negotiate a new settlement in the last week of every month.
ICIS covers the spot market, covering the inland and domestic market on a FD new-basis and the deep sea free on board (FOB) export market.
We also cover market fundamentals such as supply, production issues (planned and unplanned) and any developments in the downstream markets.
ICIS collects pricing data on a wide range of chemical, energy and fertilizer products, including Butadiene - C4s. Our extensive experience in price reporting means we can offer you access to historical data dating back more than 20 years for certain commodities.
Our time series of pricing data enables you to build and model trends, to get a view of where markets might be heading. The data service includes charting functionality, allowing you to chart and download multiple data series for manipulation in your own internal models. You can also export data to Excel via the ICIS dashboard service.
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 Butadiene - C4s, 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.