The ICIS Glycol Ether reports are published in Asia, Europe and the US on a weekly basis. Asia and US markets focus on both the ethylene and propylene based glycol ethers within this report, while in Europe these are published separately as glycol ethers and propylene glycol ethers.
Our locally based reporters gather market intelligence on demand, supply, upstream movements, production schedules and any other key factors influencing prices at the time. Follow our universally-trusted reports to help you make informed commercial decisions.
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Glycol ethers news and market information products from ICIS
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Glycol ethers: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2018
The supply is expected to be stable from key suppliers from the Middle East and Asia for the China market. The southeast Asia market is expect to be stable but ample with regional and deepsea suppliers competing for market share.
The demand outlook is mixed. So far, demand has not picked up significantly for the September peak season in China, and watered down the expectation in October. Demand in southeast Asia is expected to be stable or even increase after the rainy season.
European glycol ethers supply is stable as the fourth quarter begins, although two producers have supply limitations. INEOS will conduct a planned maintenance on glycol ethers and ethylene oxide (EO) this quarter. A number of other EO turnarounds are scheduled to take place, which will also place pressure on glycol ethers supply. However, demand typically slows down in the winter months.
Demand for European glycol ethers typically slows down in the autumn and winter months. However, given the possibility of supply constraints in the fourth quarter related to upstream ethylene oxide shutdowns and a glycol ethers planned maintenance, demand could be relatively healthy in the first half of the fourth quarter.
US glycol ethers supply will generally lengthen during the fourth quarter when inventories typically increase amid weakening demand. But some pent-up demand may keep supply from far outpacing buying interest. Production was not adversely affected by Hurricane Florence, even though the storm caused widespread flooding along the eastern US coast.
The US glycol ethers market will continue to see softening demand as the fourth quarter gets underway, but buying interest may still outpace year-ago levels, due to wildfires in the first half of 2018 and flooding damage from Hurricane Florence, both of which will likely heighten demand early next year.
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Glycol Ethers Methodology
About Glycol ethers
There are two groups of glycol ethers: E-series and P-series depending on whether they are made from ethylene oxide (EO) or propylene oxide (PO). They are used mainly as a solvent in a variety of domestic and industrial applications such as paints and coatings.
E-series glycol ethers are used as solvents and coalescing aids in paint formulations while higher molecular weight glycol ethers are used in hydraulic brake fluids. They are used as intermediates to make esters.
Propylene glycol ethers (PGE) are high performance industrial solvents used in paints and coatings, cleaners, inks and other applications.
In the electronics industry, PGEs are used with other solvents in the manufacture of laminates and semiconductor processes for making circuit boards.
Other applications include agricultural, cosmetic, ink, textile and adhesive products.