The ICIS Expandable Polystyrene report is published weekly in Asia, Europe and the US. Price assessments cover spot or contract markets for block, packaging, insulation standard and flame retardant grades, depending on the region.
These unbiased and independent reports will give you valuable insight into market developments and the key factors that are driving prices. News and analysis include an overview of the market, feedstocks movements, production schedules and graphs. Our locally based reporters provide intelligence enabling you to follow the up-to-date developments on the market and make informed commercial decisions.
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Expandable polystyrene news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Expandable polystyrene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Expandable polystyrene marketplace.
Price Reporting – More information about the price reports we publish on Expandable polystyrene
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News & analysis
News & Analysis - News & market analysis specifically relating to Expandable polystyrene
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Upstream of Expandable polystyrene
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Expandable polystyrene: Market overview
Updated to Q2 2017
The sharp decline of the April feedstock styrene contract price offered some relief to the European expandable polystyrene (EPS) market after several months of consecutive increases that took prices to unworkable levels. Lower raw material cost could help boost demand during the second quarter but also help margins recover, especially for converters. April and May are both expected to be busy months, with the exception of the Easter holiday when orders will be typically put on hold for a while.
Asian demand for EPS remained weak in March with buying momentum staying lacklustre. Despite successive price cuts in February and March, buyers were mostly non-committal and bought small lots. Sellers remained optimistic that buying momentum for EPS will pick up in the second quarter as the key construction sector in China typically peaks toward the middle of the year. At the same time, consumption of EPS will likely increase from the packaging segment when manufacturing activities in China typically picks up in the second quarter.
At least two North American EPS producers are separately positioning themselves for a price rollover in April. US EPS prices surged by an average of 14 cents/lb in March amid increasing feedstock prices in February. Two producers said they might make possible price cuts in May, but prices will continue to follow the direction of feedstocks benzene and styrene.
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Expandable polystyrene news & analysis
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Expandable Polystyrene Methodology
About Expandable polystyrene
Expandable polystyrene (EPS) is a rigid cellular form of polystyrene (PS) with good thermal insulation and shock absorbing properties, high compressive strength, low weight and resistance to moisture.
Building and construction applications are the largest outlet for EPS. Large quantities are used to make insulation foam for closed cavity walls, roofs and floor insulation. EPS foam also finds uses in road construction, bridges, drainage, flotation and sound insulation.
The other main application of EPS is in packaging. Food items such as eggs, meat, fish and poultry can be packed with EPS. The good shock absorbency of EPS makes is suitable for the packaging of delicate electronic goods.
Other uses for EPS include providing protection in crash helmets and as decoration in design work.
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