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Sulfur price index

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

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

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

Further information on the Sulfur price index

Here is some further information

 

What is Sulfur

Sulfur, also known as sulphur, is a chemical element with the symbol S and atomic number 16. It is a nonmetal that is abundant in the earth’s crust, and it is often found in the form of sulfide minerals. Sulfur is a yellow, brittle solid that has a strong, unpleasant odor. It is a poor conductor of electricity and heat, and it has a melting point of about 115 degrees Celsius. Sulfur is highly reactive and can combine with many other elements to form compounds, such as sulfur dioxide, which is a common air pollutant, and sulfuric acid, which is a strong acid used in the production of fertilizers, detergents, and other industrial products. Sulfur is an essential element for life and is used by plants and animals in a number of important metabolic processes.

 

How is sulfur produced

There are several methods for producing sulfur, and the most common method depends on the availability of raw materials and the specific needs of the end user. Some of the main methods for producing sulfur include:

Frasch process

The Frasch process is a method for extracting sulfur from underground deposits of sulfur-bearing minerals. In this process, superheated water is injected into the ground to melt the sulfur, which is then pumped to the surface.

Burning of fossil fuels

Sulfur is produced as a byproduct of the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal and oil. When these fuels are burned, they release sulfur dioxide, which can be captured and converted into elemental sulfur.

Hydrogen sulfide production

Elemental sulfur can be produced from hydrogen sulfide by reacting it with oxygen or air. This reaction produces sulfur dioxide, which can be further treated to produce elemental sulfur.

Sulfur recovery from industrial processes

Sulfur is also produced as a byproduct of various industrial processes, such as refining petroleum and processing natural gas. This sulfur can be recovered and used in the production of various chemicals and other products.

 

What is sulfur used for

Sulfur has a number of important uses in various industries. Some of the main uses of sulfur include:

Chemical production

Sulfur is used to produce a wide range of chemicals, including sulfuric acid, which is used in the production of fertilizers, detergents, and other industrial products.

Medicine

Sulfur is used in the production of some medications, such as sulfa drugs, which are used to treat infections.

Rubber production

Sulfur is used in the production of rubber, as it helps to improve the elasticity and strength of the finished product.

Pesticides

Sulfur is used as a natural pesticide to control a variety of insects, including mites, thrips, and aphids.

Water treatment

Sulfur is used in water treatment to remove impurities and improve the quality of drinking water.

Food production

Sulfur is used in the production of some food products, such as wine, beer, and some types of cheese.

Cosmetics

Sulfur is used in some cosmetics, such as facial creams, to help improve the appearance of the skin.

Other uses

Sulfur is also used in the production of batteries, fertilizers, and explosives, and it is used as a drying agent in the production of certain paints and coatings.

 

Further reading

 

Sulfur market information

The global sulfur market is a large and diverse industry that plays a vital role in many sectors of the global economy. According to data from the International Fertilizer Association, global sulfur production in 2019 was approximately 64 million metric tons. The main end-use sectors for sulfur are fertilizers, chemicals, and refining, with the majority of sulfur being used in the production of sulfuric acid, which is an important intermediate chemical used in a wide range of industries.

The global demand for sulfur has grown steadily in recent years, driven by increasing demand for fertilizers and other sulfur-based products in developing countries. The demand for sulfur is expected to continue growing in the coming years, driven by factors such as population growth, urbanization, and the increasing use of sulfur in new applications, such as the production of batteries and other high-tech products. The global sulfur market is highly competitive, with a number of large producers and a diverse range of end-use applications.

According to https://oec.world/ :

Sulphur of all kinds except sublimed, precipitated and colloidal are the world’s 1172nd most traded product.

In 2020, the top exporters of Sulphur of all kinds except sublimed, precipitated and colloidal were United Arab Emirates ($407M), Russia ($237M), Qatar ($230M), Kazakhstan ($197M), and Canada ($189M).

In 2020, the top importers of Sulphur of all kinds except sublimed, precipitated and colloidal were Morocco ($401M), China ($394M), Democratic Republic of the Congo ($201M), Brazil ($155M), and United States ($145M).

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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
  • Although we believe the price trend to be accurate, we assume no responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions in the content of this site.
  • 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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