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Updated to Q1 2018
European methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) supply slowly re-balanced in the first quarter after a tight situation through most of 2017. European MIBK spot prices were high and the market was tight from early 2017 as a result of exports and the re-allocation of feedstocks and increased focus on the contract as opposed to the spot market. This situation was exacerbated by a force majeure at producer Shell in Q3 2017. However, in Q4 2017 and Q1 2018 availability has gradually improved, with the Shell force majeure coming to an end in August and the market gradually re-adjusting in the early part of 2018.
European MIBK demand was relatively low in January and February as a result of cold winter weather, which reduced activity in downstream sectors such as construction and paints and coatings. Activity began to rise in March as weather improved. Structurally speaking, MIBK spot demand is low in Europe because the majority of material is purchased through contracts.
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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.
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