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Benzene Price Index

This post is a summary of the benzene price developments. The price developments of benzene are expressed in US$ prices converted FX rates applicable at the time when the price was valid. Benzene price index developments are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.

The outlook for benzene prices, on the second tab, is generated from different inputs including:

  • Very recent price developments of immediate cost drivers of benzene prices
  • Recent price developments of underlying feedstocks which drive the price of benzene
  • Market futures for both cost drives and feedstocks of benzene prices
  • Adjustment of current supply/demand imbalances in the benzene market
  • Longer term trends in likely demand conditions

Further information on the Benzene price index

 

What is Benzene

Benzene is an aromatic hydrocarbon with the chemical formula C6H6. It is a colorless liquid with a sweet, pleasant smell. Benzene is a naturally occurring substance that is found in crude oil and is a component of gasoline. It is also found in the vapors of some glues, paints, and detergents. Benzene is used as a starting material for the manufacture of a wide variety of chemicals, including plastics, resins, synthetic fibers, rubber, dyes, detergents, and pharmaceuticals.

Exposure to benzene can occur through inhalation, ingestion, or skin contact. Short-term exposure to high levels of benzene can cause dizziness, headaches, drowsiness, and unconsciousness. Long-term exposure to benzene can cause leukemia, a type of cancer that affects the blood-forming tissues of the body. The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified benzene as a Group 1 human carcinogen, which means that it is known to cause cancer in humans.

 

How is Benzene produced

There are several ways to produce benzene, but the most common method is through the fractional distillation of crude oil. During the refining process, crude oil is heated to high temperatures and then vaporized. The vapor is then cooled and condensed, forming a mixture of liquid hydrocarbons. This mixture is then separated into different fractions, or components, based on their boiling points. Benzene has a relatively low boiling point, so it is typically found in the fraction that boils between gasoline and naphtha.

Another way to produce benzene is through the cracking of naphtha or other petroleum feedstocks. Cracking is a process in which large hydrocarbon molecules are broken down into smaller molecules. The smaller molecules can then be used to make a variety of products, including benzene.

Benzene can also be produced from the destructive distillation of coal. In this process, coal is heated in the absence of air to produce a mixture of gases and liquids, including benzene. This method was once used to produce benzene on a large scale, but it has largely been replaced by the fractional distillation of crude oil.

 

What different types of Benzene are there

There are several different types of benzene derivatives, which are chemical compounds that are derived from benzene. These derivatives are often used as intermediates in the production of a wide range of chemicals and products. Here are a few examples of benzene derivatives:

Toluene

Toluene is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, aromatic smell. It is used as a solvent and as a starting material for the production of a number of chemicals, including benzene, styrene, and xylene.

Xylene

Xylene is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, fruity smell. It is used as a solvent and as a starting material for the production of a number of chemicals, including polyethylene terephthalate (PET), which is used to make plastic bottles and other products.

Phenol

Phenol is a white, crystalline solid with a sweet, medicinal smell. It is used as a starting material for the production of a number of chemicals, including plastics, resins, and pharmaceuticals.

Aniline

Aniline is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, fruity smell. It is used as a starting material for the production of a number of chemicals, including dyes, rubber chemicals, and pharmaceuticals.

There are many other benzene derivatives that are used in a wide range of applications, including solvents, plastics, resins, and pharmaceuticals.

 

What is Benzene used for

Benzene is used as a starting material for the manufacture of a wide variety of chemicals, including plastics, resins, synthetic fibers, rubber, dyes, detergents, and pharmaceuticals. Here are a few specific examples of how benzene is used:

Plastics

Benzene is a key starting material for the production of a number of plastics, such as polystyrene, which is used to make plastic containers, foam insulation, and a variety of other products.

Resins

Benzene is also used in the production of resins, which are used to make adhesives, coatings, and fibers.

Synthetics fibers

Benzene is a key component of synthetic fibers, such as nylon, which is used to make clothing, carpets, and other products.

Rubber

Benzene is used as a solvent in the production of rubber. It is also used as a starting material for the manufacture of a variety of rubber chemicals.

Detergents

Benzene is used in the production of detergents and cleaning agents.

Dyes and pharmaceuticas

Benzene is also used in the production of dyes and pharmaceuticals.

 

How big is the Benzene market

It is difficult to estimate the size of the global benzene market, as it is a component of many products and is used in a wide variety of industries. However, benzene is an important chemical that is in high demand, and it is typically produced in large quantities. According to the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), global benzene demand was approximately 45 million metric tons in 2019. The Asia-Pacific region is the largest market for benzene, accounting for more than half of global demand. The demand for benzene is expected to continue to grow in the coming years, driven by increasing demand for plastics and other chemicals.

According to https://oec.world/ :

Benzene are the world’s 617th most traded product.

In 2020, the top exporters of Benzene were South Korea ($1.09B), India ($705M), Germany ($394M), Netherlands ($328M), and Thailand ($272M).

 

Further information

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Notes on the price-data

  • We aim to update the data series on the 11th and 25th of each month (but we do not always make it for each chart)
  • The data for the current month and recent history are fine-tuned over time.
  • We are continually improving our data collection and processing methods and data will be updated from time to time as we improve the accuracy
  • We are working hard to upgrade the algorithm before April 1, 2023 and a further fine-tune by July 1, 2023
  • This the index trend of the price of the product group in general and not a single specification in particular
  • The source of the data are exclusively public non-confidential sources
  • We combine public publications, import/export records, company announcements, and sources of ad-hoc public information.
  • The chart shows the price trend,  nearly always taken from many statistically-correlated sources 
  • The data is presented in US$. The UOM of measure is shown in the Index list table
  • We do our best to create an accurate representation of the trend
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  • The information is provided on an “as is” basis with no guarantees of completeness, accuracy, usefulness, fitness for purpose or timeliness.
  • By their nature, outlooks are always uncertain
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