Quarterly Update on Global 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid Market
For the Quarter Ending June 2021
The supplies of the 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid improved in the North American region after the winter storm disrupted several manufacturing facilities in Q1. The industrial infrastructure in the US Gulf region restored and refineries ramped up the operating rates to cope with the demand-supply imbalance. Export market outlook improved as the demand piled up from the overseas market with downstream construction sector gaining pace during Q2. Raw material escalations continued to send ripples to the 2-EHA prices across the globe. In response to the global factors, Perstorp announced increase in 2-EHA prices by USD 330 per tonne in June starting and OQ chemicals also raised 2-EHA prices by USD 100 per tonne later in June for the US deliveries. Players reported acute shortage in the material availability and high demand as the key factor raising the regional offers.
During the second quarter of 2021, 2-EHA supplies in the Asia Pacific region improved to meet the surging end use demand. Several Japanese manufacturers opted to positively revise the offers amidst continued pressure from the raw material front and consistent gains in crude prices. Vaccine rollouts stimulated hope for continued recovery. The uptrend in Asian 2-EHA prices was mainly influenced by the overseas market conditions while the demand remained outlook remained stable. OQ Chemicals hiked the prices for 2-EHA deliveries to the APAC region by USD 220 per tonne in the second half of the quarter. Demand from China surged amidst improved demand from the paints and coating sector and rising enquiries from the refrigeration lubricant manufacturers. Prices in India followed the global trajectory, but the demand outlook showcased mixed sentiments due to the restrictions imposed by the authorities to contain the spread of second COVID wave.
During the second quarter of 2021, the supplies of the 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid in the European region surged as Oxea’s plant in Oberhausen (Germany) ended its turnaround after the fire broke out at one of its 2-EHA manufacturing facility. The recovering automotive industry and strong demand from the construction activities surged the offtakes of 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid, thereby supporting the demand outlook in the regional market. Raw material Propylene continued to trade higher during the quarter which maintained cost pressure over the manufacturer’s margins. Also, the demand from the refrigeration lubricant sector was bolstered throughout the region which further led to an increment in the regional 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid offers. Prices were revised by USD 80 per tonne by the quarter ending, keeping the values rangebound between $2430-2450/mt in June.
For the Quarter Ending March 2021
During the first quarter of 2021, supplies remained tight in the North American region as various manufacturer in mid-February announced unplanned force majeure due to unprecedented severe freeze weather conditions in Texas and nearby US Gulf region. Furthermore, high freight charges amid the shortages reduced the export to the other regions. The demand however surged amid the shortages from the plasticizers sector. Consequently, several renowned companies surged the prices of 2-Ethyl Hexanoic Acid by +USD 511 per ton in March.
2-Ethyl Hexanoic Acid supplies were limited in the Asia Pacific region, during Q1 2021, due to the unprecedented plant turnarounds amid the Chinese lunar new year holidays, and several plant turnarounds in USA due to the freezing temperatures. The scenario led to the global supply shortage and reduction in imports. The exports from Europe region witnessed multi-fold surged by +USD 500 per MT in March.
The supplies were tight in the first quarter of 2021, due to several plant turnarounds and reduced production rates in the Northwest European region. US supplies to the region declined due to bad weather-related disruptions. Perstorp Oxo AB surged the prices of 2-Ethylhexanoic Acid by +USD 506/MT for the domestic market and by +USD 510/MT for the deliveries for USA due to the feeble production and high shipping freight charges. However, demand witnessed an uptrend in the first quarter, due to better offtake from export segment as a repercussion of global supply shortage.
For the Quarter Ending December 2020
The demand of higher carboxylic acids in the Asian markets remained high with prices witnessing an upswing supported by strong demand prospects during Q4 2020. In China, product availability seemed hampered amidst production related constraints heard across several upstream (Propylene) units. Market players reported favourable buying sentiments as restocking activity by downstream plasticizer manufacturers was high throughout the quarter. Prevailing demand and supply imbalance in December prompted a major producer to raise its offers for 2-EHA by USD 100 per MT w.e.f. January 2021. 2-EHA is widely used as an intermediate in the production of plasticizers, PVC stabilizers, lubricants, cosmetics and drying additives for coatings.
2-EHA market in the Americas remained well supported in terms of pricing throughout the fourth quarter. Some manufacturers were heard revising their offered prices several times within Q4 to match pace with the surge observed in raw material pricing. Demand-supply situation seemed dented under the seasonal hurricanes which caused supply chain disruptions and container shortages across Asia. In October 2020, leading oxo-alcohol and intermediates manufacturer positively revised the price of 2-EHA by USD 100-111/metric ton for all its shipments across North America. Due to an overall increase in the production cost and tight supply situation, the trend remained likewise in almost all the American countries.
The European 2-EHA market showed a substantial growth in Q4 2020 despite looming uncertainties due to surging COVID-19 infections exacerbated by the emergence of new virus strain and fresh lockdowns imposed in some highly infected countries. The demand was primarily driven by pigments and plasticizer industries. OQ Chemicals, Germany’s leading 2-EHA producer revised its offered rates for 2-Ethylhecanoic Acid by USD 116/Mt w.e.f. mid-November due to persistent tightness in the product supply by a consistent demand rise.