ICIS price reporting for regional Benzene markets is unparalleled in its ability to keep you on top of the information you need.
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Updated to Q3 2016
Domestic petroleum benzene prices in China rose in July, rose again after a sharp drop in August and then fluctuated within a narrow range during September.
In July, import prices remained firm, lifting domestic market sentiment. This, together with tight spot supply in east China and improved buying interest, resulted in fewer lower-priced cargoes available in the market. In addition, traders chose to lift offers to cover incremental import costs because of a slide in the value of the yuan.
At the beginning of August, market sentiment was undermined by a bearish crude oil market and softer import prices. Downstream producers were reluctant to buy due to the pessimistic price outlook and modest inventory levels. A lack of bids weighed on domestic petroleum benzene offers at the low end. However, from mid August, overseas benzene prices rose on the back of a rally in crude oil prices. This, together with tighter supply in the spot market, improved sentiment. Most cargo holders kept offers stable and a few buyers lifted their bids.
As a result of the mid-autumn Festival from 15-17 September, downstream producers proved unwilling to make purchases. This, together with narrow fluctuations in crude oil and overseas benzene prices, forced domestic cargo holders into a wait-and-see stance. Their offers were largely unchanged. Limited discussions resulted in only a few done deals. During this period, most market players kept a close eye on crude oil prices, plant operations and the pricing ideas of major domestic producers.
Sinopec raised its benzene list price 3 times during July – by CNY150/tonne, CNY150/tonne and CNY100/tonne, respectively. However, on 2 August, it cut benzene list prices by CNY200/tonne, and by CNY100/tonne on 3 separate occassions during the month. At the end of Q3, the east China benzene market closed at CNY5,300-5,350/tonne (ex-tank Zhangjiagang), which was CNY500 higher at the low end and CNY550 higher at the high end when compared with June’s figures.
We offer the following regional Benzene analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the China Benzene marketplace.
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Benzene is used primarily as a raw material in the synthesis of styrene (polystyrene plastics and synthetic rubber).
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The expert China Benzene Monthly report provides readers with a synopsis of prices, analysis and forecasts for the China benzene market. The in-depth report contains information on production, imports and exports as well as a monthly market focus on key developments. It also supplies readers with demand analysis on downstream products including styrene and phenol.
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