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We offer the following regional Feedstocks coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Europe & US Feedstocks marketplace.
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Updated to Q1 2017
Northwest European naphtha cargo spot prices rose steadily, hit a peak and then declined during the first quarter, in line with movements in upstream ICE Brent crude oil futures.
In early January, the naphtha average spot price stood at $480/tonne CIF (cost, insurance, freight) NWE (northwest Europe) before it rose all the way to $518/tonne on 1 February. The cargo price then decreased gradually through to late March on a sharp decline in upstream ICE Brent crude oil futures.
European petrochemical demand for naphtha picked up in February because of healthy cracker margins and a narrowing naphtha-propane spread.
The arbitrage window to Asia, which had opened up in November, seemed to shut around early March. It had been shut through most of 2016 because of a narrow price spread between European and Asian naphtha cargoes.
The transatlantic gasoline arbitrage window was shut for the most part of the first quarter.
Low water levels on the Rhine river prevented barges carrying refined oil products from sailing fully loaded along the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp-southern Germany route, with barges loaded at 40-60% of capacity in the Upper Rhine in the first quarter. There were no major restrictions to barges travelling the Lower Rhine.
However, Rhine levels improved considerably in early March.
Updated to Q1 2017
US ethane prices were muted during the first quarter, as cracker demand was supressed by a heavy turnaround season. However, ethane fractionation margins remained largely positive during the quarter, mostly on weak natural gas futures. Ethane rejection remains high, with analyst estimates reaching 500,000 bbl/day.
Meanwhile, US propane prices have been supported by strong exports. According to the EIA (Energy Information Administration), propane exports averaged over 1m bbl/day for the first quarter.
Exports have helped to mitigate the impact from the recent downturn in crude oil.
ICIS provides pricing information, news and analysis for all major petrochemical and chemical markets, including Feedstocks.
We offer unbiased and independent price reporting, with our price assessments being widely quoted as benchmarks in contracts.
Our information is collected from market participants by our global network of reporters, delivering unrivalled coverage of established and emerging markets, including China and Asia.
ICIS price assessments are based on information gathered from a wide cross section of the market, comprising consumers, producers, traders and distributors. Confirmed deals, verified by both buyer and seller, provide the foundation of our price assessments, giving you a robust reference for your negotiations.
ICIS collects pricing data on a wide range of chemical, energy and fertilizer products, including Feedstocks. 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 enable 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 Feedstocks, 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.