For the Quarter Ending December 2022
As a result of ongoing market volatility in the U.S., Vitamin E prices continued to fall in the fourth quarter of 2022, with FOB Illinois prices decreasing from $20750/MT to $20030/MT from October to December. Due to the Golden Week break, imports from China were restricted during the first week of October 2022. Several domestic merchants had to up their price bids to keep up with the demand. For the majority of the quarter, unstable supply chains were put in jeopardy by China's Covid lockdowns, Russia's crisis in Ukraine, rising U.S. inflation, and extreme weather. The U.S. supply chain gradually improved in the second half of 2022 as the economy started to expand, and the ports experienced a significant drop in ship backlogs following a protracted port backlog. Demand-wise, offtakes in the end-user industries remained steady throughout the quarter.
The domestic Vitamin E market in China started to show signs of contraction during the fourth quarter of 2022, with FOB Shanghai values falling from $16090/MT to $15290/MT from October to December. Due to the closure of industrial facilities for the Golden Week during the first week of October, China's Vitamins manufacturing sector experienced a continuous fall and the lowest export orders. It was challenging for the market to catch up to the small rise recorded in some downstream industries during the first part of Q4 due to the diversity of contradicting signals that Chinese traders dealing with the return from the Golden Week holiday had to contend with. Large stocks on their shelves enabled domestic suppliers and producers to satisfy all domestic demand for the whole quarter. The administration changed its zero-covid regulations in response to protests and widespread unrest in the nation, which once more made the nation susceptible.
In the fourth quarter of 2022, the European Vitamin E market continued to shrink, with CFR Hamburg values dropping to $17090 MT in December from $16459/mt in October. Germany's industrial production increased slightly in October despite rising energy costs and supply-chain hiccups. However, the COVID-19 issues, as well as the circumstances in Russia and Ukraine, all continued to have a detrimental effect on productivity. Demand-wise, the end-user industries saw favorable offtakes, while the pharmaceutical and nutraceutical businesses struggled as a result of rising raw material and energy costs.
For the Quarter Ending September 2022
Vitamin E prices in the United States began to decline in the third quarter of 2022, with values falling from $22400 per MT to $19800 per MT FOB Illinois from July to September. Due to China's intermittent lockdowns, downstream demand in the US decreased during the quarter. Imports into the US were significantly curtailed from the last week of July due to several Chinese manufacturing sites that were closed for maintenance. This had a substantial impact on the domestic market's dropping demand and downward pricing trend in the latter weeks of the third quarter.
The price trend for Vitamin E showed downward sentiments in the Asia Pacific market during the third quarter of 2022, with values declining from $16450/mt to $15500/mt for 50% CWS FOB Qingdao from July to September. Among the factors influencing this pricing trend is the fluctuating cost of raw materials, changing consumer spending, and weak end-user sector demand. Big suppliers only placed orders for immediate use during the first half due to both the steady offtakes and the high downstream demand. However, after the markets began operations in the last week of July, several vitamin makers carried out maintenance, which reduced the amount of Vitamin E that was accessible to local as well as international providers.
The price of Vitamin E in Germany decreased from $16720/MT to $15510/MT from July to September, demonstrating a downtrend during the 3rd quarter of 2022. Logistics issues brought on by continuous transportation delays have worsened Germany's economic slump this quarter. The commercial situation in Europe was made worse by China's ongoing port restrictions as well as the unrest in Russia and Ukraine. Domestic merchants were forced to cut their prices in the second part of the quarter as a result of the decreased demand from the pharmaceutical and nutraceutical industries.
For the Quarter Ending June 2022
In the second quarter of 2022, there were indications that the market trend for vitamin E in North America stagnated. A supply shortage that already existed in the US was made worse by the COVID shutdown in China's commercial hubs, which greatly hindered imports. Domestic merchants and buyers were concerned about high raw material prices throughout the quarter because of the US's rising inflation, the troublesome political situation in Russia and Ukraine, and the wildly unpredictable nature of oil prices. A modest increase in import, consumer, and production spending followed the abrupt change in oil prices in May. Despite the Asian blockades, in June, maritime cargo from China appeared to pass through the nation's main ports without any issues. Nevertheless, as the quarter progressed, demand from the nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries remained strong.
During the second quarter of 2022, the price trend for vitamin E in the Asia Pacific region showcased a downward trend. China's domestic market had a sharp rise in nutraceuticals output during the first half of the quarter due to its factories and ports opening. After a spike in COVID-19 instances during the latter week of April, which had various effects on the nation's nutraceutical markets, the Chinese government put significant production facilities on lockdown. The end-user industries' need for offtakes remained consistent throughout the quarter. The nation's irrational Zero tolerance policy led to many cargo ships getting stuck at ports, making it more difficult to transport the product to other markets. Numerous factories were prepared to provide the products at a discount toward the conclusion of the quarter to get rid of stockpiles before they decayed due to the high COVID tariffs.
The Vitamin E market in the European region remained favorable throughout the second quarter of 2022, despite a little drop in pricing that began at the end of June. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine raised shipping costs and slowed commodities' flow into Europe, making it harder for exporting nations to conduct business. Throughout the entire quarter, demand from end-user businesses remained constant. However, the suppliers had enough inventory to meet all domestic demand.
For the Quarter Ending March 2022
Vitamin E prices in the North American market climbed significantly in Q1 2022, owing to strong demand from the nutraceutical and pharmaceutical businesses. Several traders in the United States loaded their shelves ahead of China's spring festival holidays, resulting in sufficient supplies in the domestic market to meet overall downstream demand. The price of Vitamin E has also risen as a result of the increased demand for nutritional supplements among health-conscious consumers in the United States who want to change their eating habits. Due to prolonged port congestion and delayed supplies from Asia during the Omicron outbreak, the US nutraceuticals market remained in a state of frenzy throughout the second half of the first quarter. During the last week of March, however, ocean freight charges on the key trade channels remained consistent but remained extraordinarily high. Due to exceptional increases in freight prices during the continuing Russia-Ukraine conflict, supply interruptions and manpower shortages became much worse.
The Vitamin E market in the Asia Pacific region showcased positive sentiments throughout Q1 2022 followed by the consistent offtakes in the end-user industries. In the Chinese domestic market, the prices of Vitamin E soared in the month of January owing to the increased demand from the downstream manufacturers and got settled at USD17115 per MT FOB Qingdao. Major feed grade manufacturers, including Zhejiang NHU Pharmaceutical and Shangyu NHU Bio-Chem, halted their operations in order to contain the spread of the Omicron variant of the virus, which exacerbated the pricing trend of Vitamins in the Chinese market. In early H1 of 2022, Vitamin markets remained in the wait-and-see mode as the full impact on supply was under pressure due to the winter Olympics and the Lunar new year. However, the sentiments then later rebounded after the break with increased demand for the product from the domestic as well as offshore buyers. In India, Vitamin E discussions for CFR and Ex-Mumbai were assessed at USD10434.4/mt and USD11102.93/mt, respectively on the month ending March. On the demand front, offtakes from the downstream pharmaceutical industry remained strong during the 1st quarter. The downstream demand was met because Vitamin E was readily available in the Indian home market.
The European market, began the first quarter of 2022 with strong feelings. Because of the steady intake in those industries, demand for Vitamin E from end-user firms such as pharmaceutical and nutraceutical was robust throughout the first quarter. Rocketing raw material costs, escalating energy crises, and rising freight costs continued to wreak havoc on European market emotions. Increased production cost due to high feed prices amid Russia-Ukraine further contributed to the price trend of Vitamin E in Europe. The FOB prices of Vitamin E in Germany were assessed at USD22400/mt in the starting month of Q1 2022.
For the Quarter Ending December 2021
The US domestic market trend of Vitamin E showcased positive sentiments during the 4th quarter of 2021. The prices of Vitamin E escalated from USD 24986/MT to USD 25550/MT from October to November and then later got declined in December by settling at USD 24990/MT FOB Illinois. A hike in the overall cost of production led to a substantial spike in prices where energy feedstocks soared since the later stages of Q3. The logistics issues, along with the disrupted supply chains and high freight charges, further supported the price trend in the country. In terms of demand, the fundamentals remained firm as the nutraceutical and cosmetics industry kept consistency in volume intakes.
During the fourth quarter of 2021, the prices of Vitamin E witnessed a significant rise across the Asia Pacific region. In China, Vitamin E prices for FOB Illinois shot up from USD 13932/MT to USD 16712/MT from October to December on the back of the strong demand from the downstream industries. Several manufacturers stopped offering quotations in November to the spot buyers in Q4, which resulted in the raised market sentiments. The overall supply outlook was highly influenced by the tightened supply and elevated cost of raw materials during Q4. Furthermore, the impact after the implementation of dual control on energy consumption uplifted the quotations for the upstreams in the Chinese domestic market, which later in the third week of December. In the Indian domestic market, CFR JNPT and EX-Mumbai prices for Vitamin E were assessed at USD 10509.79/MT and USD 11309.67/MT, respectively, in December.
In Europe, the prices of Vitamin E remained in the upward momentum during quarter 4 of 2021 following the price trend of the USA, which gradually gained numbers during the mid-week of November. As Netherlands and Germany are the major importers of Vitamins, spiraling raw materials costs, peaking energy crises, and soaring freight costs in China compelled to trade the product at increased prices across the region. The demand from the downstream nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries remained strong throughout the quarter.