Fundamentals weaken, PA6 market declines

Price trend


Benzalkonium chloride

The recent domestic PA6 market trend is weak, with spot prices falling. According to data monitoring by Business News Agency, as of March 17, the average factory price of PA6 in China was 13900 yuan/ton, a decrease of – 1.65% compared to the average price level at the beginning of the month.


Cause analysis


In terms of raw materials:


It can be seen from the above figure that the market price of caprolactam is stable this week. The price of raw material pure benzene fell, and cost support weakened. In addition, the market supply has increased due to the increased load of caprolactam units. Downstream, procurement is just needed, and cautious operation is the key. It is expected that caprolactam may weaken in the short term, weakening its support for PA6.


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On the supply side:


This week, the overall load of domestic PA6 production enterprises was around 72%, with an overall narrow increase. The market supply is stable, the inventory position is rising, the supplier’s support for spot goods is moderate, and the factory price is reduced.


Demand: On the downstream side, the overall load of the weaving and spinning industries has increased in a narrow range, but the consumption of raw materials is poor, replenishment demand is weak, on-site trading is weak, and the overall demand for PA6 chips is poor.


Aftermarket Forecast


The PA6 market fell this week. The load of domestic polymerization plants has steadily increased, and the supply has maintained an adequate level. The demand side tends to be rigid. Caprolactam weakened, and PA6 cost side support was moderate. Market sentiment is dominated by wait-and-see, with actual single trading volume shrinking. It is expected that the PA6 market will continue to be weak in the short term.

Butadiene market declined in a stepwise manner

According to the monitoring of the Business News Agency, the market price of butadiene declined in a ladder. From March 6 to 10, the domestic market price of butadiene fell from 9450 yuan/ton to 9166 yuan/ton, with a price decline of 3.00% during the cycle, a price decline of 3.70% month-on-month and a year-on-year decline of 1.29%. The supply side has increased, and it is difficult for downstream rigid demand to provide effective support, and the market continues to decline. The butadiene market gradually weakened.


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In terms of cost and crude oil: the international oil price fell, and the main negative factors were: the market worried that the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates or turn to more aggressive strategies, which would put pressure on the economy and demand. In terms of naphtha, the profit of downstream ethylene cracking unit improved slightly, but the news of demand improvement has not been released. Gasoline shocks have been sorted out, and the naphtha market continues to run at a high level.


On the supply side, the listed price of butadiene of Sinopec’s sales companies has been reduced by 600 yuan/ton to 9200 yuan/ton. The 30000t/a butadiene unit of Liaoyang Petrochemical Plant is in stable operation, and 200 tons of goods are sold at competitive price for export. The transaction price is 8680 yuan/ton. Butadiene supply side was negative.


On the demand side, the raw material butadiene market fell, and the synthetic rubber market fell, but there was no obvious positive boost on the demand side. The demand for butadiene is weak.


In terms of external market: the closing price of butadiene in Asia was stable on March 9: the FOB price in South Korea was 1175-1185 US dollars/ton,; China CFR News 1195-1205 USD/ton. The external price of butadiene in Europe remained stable: FOB Rotterdam closed at 845-855 US dollars/ton; FD Northwest Europe closed at 875-885 euros/ton.


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Region/ Country/ Closing price/ Up and down

Asia/ FOB Korea/ 1175-1185 US dollars/ton/ 0 yuan/ton

Asia/ CFR China/1195-1205 USD/ton/ 0 USD/ton

Europe and America/ FOB Rotterdam/ 845-855 dollars/ton/ 0 USD/ton

Europe/ FD Northwest Europe/ 875-885 euros/ton/ 0 Euro/ton

In the future, it is predicted that the short-term supply increment is less than expected due to the continued impact of device restart. Downstream product prices fell, and profits remained under pressure. Butadiene analysts of the Business Agency predict that the domestic butadiene market will be dominated by weak consolidation in the short term.

Insufficient demand, weak melamine market

According to the monitoring sample data of the Business News Agency, the average price of melamine enterprises was 8125.00 yuan/ton as of March 14, down 1.22% from the price of last Friday (March 10).



The melamine market has declined recently. Recently, the market of raw material urea has declined slightly, but the cost side is still supported. Some devices in the supply side fluctuate, and the manufacturers execute the early orders in an orderly manner. However, the follow-up of new orders in the market is insufficient, the enthusiasm of downstream procurement is not high, the market mentality is under pressure, and the focus of melamine market negotiation is weak.


For upstream urea, the domestic urea market was temporarily stable on March 14. On March 13, the reference price of urea was 2822.50, down 0.24% from March 1 (2829.38).


Melamine analysts from the business agency believe that the current cost support is general, the supply and demand support is weak, and the operators are not in a good mood. It is expected that the melamine market will be weak in the short term, and more attention should be paid to market information guidance.

The price of crude benzol increased in a narrow range (from March 3 to March 10)

From March 3 to March 10, 2023, the bidding price of crude benzene increased by a narrow margin, from 5878 yuan/ton at the end of last week to 5925 yuan/ton at the end of this week, with a weekly increase of 0.8%.


Benzalkonium chloride

In terms of crude oil, this week’s crude oil market was shrouded in a negative atmosphere. The market was worried that the Federal Reserve might raise interest rates aggressively, which would add to the sharp increase in the United States refined oil storage. Concerns about the future economic and demand prospects remained. International crude oil futures rose on March 10. The settlement price of the main contract of US WTI crude oil futures was 76.68 US dollars/barrel, up 0.96 US dollars or 1.3%. The settlement price of the main contract of Brent crude oil futures was 82.78 US dollars/barrel, up 1.19 US dollars or 1.5%.


The ex-factory price of Sinopec pure benzene increased by 100 yuan/ton on March 8, 2023, and the current price is 7200 yuan/ton.


Other enterprises: Jingbo Petrochemical quoted 7400 yuan/ton, HSBC Petrochemical quoted 7300 yuan/ton, Weilian Chemical quoted 7203 yuan/ton, Xinhai Petrochemical quoted 7350 yuan/ton, and Hongrun Petrochemical quoted 7300 yuan/ton.


The commodity price K-bar chart uses the concept of price trend K-line to reflect the weekly or monthly price changes in the form of bar chart. Investors can buy and sell investments according to the changes in the K-bar chart. Red indicates: rising; Green means: down; The height of the K column indicates the range of rise and fall. The weekly K-column chart of pure benzene shows that after entering July, the price of pure benzene has continued to decline, slightly warmed at the end of August and the beginning of September, the price of pure benzene has mainly declined from October to December, warmed in January, and increased slightly for five consecutive weeks after February.


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In terms of industrial chain: the market price of pure benzene continued to maintain a slight upward trend this week. The crude oil trend of this week rose in the first half of the week and declined in the second half of the week. However, the downstream styrene market strengthened, boosting the mentality of the pure benzene market. The pure benzene market rose slightly this week. However, the downstream side has been more wait-and-see recently, and the overall purchase intention is low. The trend of hydrogenation benzene market basically follows that of pure benzene, with a slight increase this week as the main trend, which also boosts the downstream crude benzene market.


The crude benzene market continued to adjust slightly this week, with the overall price rising slightly. The main production area in Shandong Province is 6060 yuan/ton, a slight increase of 80 yuan/ton compared with last week. On the supply side, the operating rate of coking enterprises this week remained high, and crude benzene supply was slightly loose. In terms of demand, the hydrogenation benzene market is still in operation, and the demand for crude benzene still exists. The price rise this week is mainly due to the impact of the overall high volatility of the industrial chain, and the downstream demand is still good, driving the market price to rise steadily. However, the trend of crude oil in the current cycle is slightly low, and the price has continued to decline, which has dragged down the mentality of some markets. Due to the large volatility of crude oil in the recent period, the market guidance is insufficient. In a comprehensive view, the business community expects that the crude benzene market price will be mainly adjusted in a narrow range. The future market will focus on the impact of the trend of basic products such as crude oil and styrene on the market mentality.

Insufficient cost support ,The price of acetic anhydride stabilized after rising this week

The price of acetic anhydride stabilized after rising this week



According to the data monitoring of the Business News Agency, as of March 10, the price of acetic anhydride was 5300 yuan/ton, up 0.24% from 5287.50 yuan/ton on March 3; The price of acetic anhydride rose by 0.71% from 5262.50 yuan/ton on March 1. The price of raw materials stabilized, and the cost support was insufficient. The price of acetic anhydride stabilized after rising this week.


The price of acetic acid fluctuated and stabilized this week


As can be seen from the chart of acetic acid price trend of the business community, as of March 10, the price of acetic acid was 3283.33 yuan/ton, up 4.23% from the price of acetic anhydride of 3150 yuan/ton on March 1; The price of acetic acid was stable compared with 3283.33 yuan/ton on March 3. This week, the price of acetic acid stopped rising and stabilized, the cost of acetic anhydride was not supported, and the rising power of acetic anhydride was weakened.


Methanol prices fell in shock this week



As can be seen from the methanol price trend chart of the business community, as of March 10, the methanol price was 2637.50 yuan/ton, down 3.59% from the price of 2735.83 yuan/ton on March 1; Compared with the methanol price of 2693.33 yuan/ton on March 3, it fell by 2.07%. This week, the price of methanol fell sharply, the cost of acetic acid fell, the price of raw materials for carbonyl acetic anhydride fell, and the downward pressure on acetic anhydride increased.


Future prospects


Analysts of the acetic anhydride data of the Business Agency believe that the price of acetic acid has stopped rising and stabilized this week, the price of methanol has fallen, and the cost of acetic anhydride has fallen. In the future, the rise of acetic anhydride cost is not supported, and it is expected that the price of acetic anhydride will stabilize in the future.

The market of cyclohexanone fell in February

According to the monitoring of the Business News Agency, the domestic cyclohexanone market fell in February. From February 1 to 28, the average market price of cyclohexanone in China fell from 9600 yuan/ton to 9450 yuan/ton, down 1.56%, and the price fell 13.83% year on year.


Benzalkonium chloride

The main factors affecting the price decline of cyclohexanone this month are as follows: the raw material pure benzene fluctuates at a high level, and the cost supports the market of cyclohexanone; The downstream caprolactam market is in weak operation, and it is mainly purchased on demand. The plant operating rate of the production enterprise is maintained at about 60%, and the supply is relatively stable. Downstream demand is recovering in succession, and most of the procurement is based on orders for immediate demand, which is difficult to change significantly in a short time. It can be seen that the main factor restricting the market of cyclohexanone this month is the downstream demand.


On the cost side, the base price of pure benzene of the business community was 7125.50 yuan/ton on January 31, up 9.08% from January 1 (6532.17 yuan/ton). The cost of cyclohexanone is obviously positive.


In terms of supply, the market is relatively abundant at present. The main production enterprises are overhauling or stopping production. Some production enterprises mainly supply caprolactam, and cyclohexanone is not exported for the time being. The supply side of cyclohexanone in the short term is difficult to have positive factors.


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On the demand side, the market price of caprolactam, the main downstream product of cyclohexanone, fluctuated slightly. The spot supply in the market is reduced, and downstream purchases are mainly based on demand, and deals are made at low prices. The market of caprolactam is mainly shaken, sorted and operated. The demand side of cyclohexanone also has no positive support.


According to the future forecast, the market price of pure benzene fluctuates at a high level, and the rising power is insufficient. The supply of cyclohexanone industry is stable, the load of caprolactam in Lunan is increased, and the demand for cyclohexanone is increased. Other chemical fibers are expected to just follow up. The cyclohexanone analyst of the business agency predicted that the short-term domestic cyclohexanone market would be dominated by consolidation.

The price of calcium carbide in northwest China is temporarily stable this week (2.25-3.3)

Recent price trend of calcium carbide


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It can be seen from the above figure that the ex-factory price of calcium carbide in the northwest region is temporarily stable this week. This week, the average ex-factory price of mainstream calcium carbide manufacturers in northwest China was 3483.33 yuan/ton. It was 15.04% lower than the same period last year. The carbide commodity index on March 5 was 91.27, which was the same as yesterday, down 56.99% from the cycle’s highest point of 212.23 (2021-10-26), and up 64.48% from the lowest point of 55.49 on March 14, 2016. (Note: the period refers to September 1, 2011 to now)


Insufficient upstream support and weaker downstream demand


From the manufacturer’s quotation, the ex-factory price of calcium carbide in the northwest region is temporarily stable this week


Benzalkonium chloride

The market price of the upstream blue charcoal market was low, and the price of the downstream PVC market fell slightly. At the end of this week, the price of Shenmu charcoal was around 1300-1500 yuan/ton, and the cost support was insufficient. The market price of PVC fell from 6313.33 yuan/ton at the beginning of the week to 6251.67 yuan/ton at the end of the week, down 0.98%. The year-on-year decline was 28.39%. The PVC market price fell slightly, the enthusiasm of downstream customers for calcium carbide procurement weakened, and the downstream PVC market had a negative impact on the price of calcium carbide.


Calcium carbide may fall in the aftermarket


In the middle and early days of March, the carbide market may fall in a narrow range. The price of raw material blue charcoal is low, the cost support is insufficient, the downstream PVC market is slightly fluctuating, and the downstream demand is weakened. In the middle and early March, the price of calcium carbide in the northwest region may fall in a narrow range, mainly through consolidation.

This week, the DMC market was weak and fell (2.27-3.03)

According to the monitoring data of the Business News Agency, as of March 3, 2023, the market price of domestic silicone DMC was referred to as 17380 yuan/ton. Compared with the price of February 26, 2023 (the reference price of silicone DMC was 17660 yuan/ton), the price was reduced by 280 yuan/ton, or 1.59%.



It can be seen from the data monitoring chart of the Business Agency that this week (2.27-3.03), the domestic silicone DMC market as a whole rose steadily and fell slightly. At the beginning of the week, Shandong Big Factory successively lowered the ex-factory price of organosilicon DMC, which fell to about 16800 yuan/ton. Subsequently, the transaction at low prices in the market improved, and the prices of large factories did not show any obvious performance of profit yield, and remained basically stable until the end of the week. At present, the overall downstream demand of organosilicon DMC terminal is general, and the digestion of raw materials is relatively slow. Some organosilicon DMC suppliers have also followed the large manufacturers to reduce their prices slightly. The leading large manufacturers still keep the initial quotations stable, and the difference between high and low prices in the organosilicon DMC field has widened. As of March 3, the market price of domestic silicone DMC was around 16800-17500 yuan/ton.



Future trend forecast of silicone DMC market


At present, the supply side of silicone DMC is still relatively loose, and the supply side is generally supported. In terms of cost, although the market of raw materials has declined slightly, the support for the silicone DMC market is still limited. The current downstream demand still plays a key role in the trend of the silicone DMC market. The silicone DMC statistician of the business agency believes that in the short term, the domestic silicone DMC market is mainly weak in sorting and operation, The specific trend also needs to pay more attention to the changes in information on the supply and demand side.

In February, the aluminum price fell by 3.37%, and the aftermarket shocks were mainly weak

Aluminum price fell by 3.37% in February


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According to the data of Business News Agency, the average price of domestic aluminum ingots in the East China market on February 28, 2023 was 18340 yuan/ton, down 3.37% from the aluminum price of 18980 yuan/ton at the beginning of the month (February 1). After the aluminum price recovered in January, the aluminum price fell in mid-February, and the current price is at the low level in the month.


In the long term, the current price is in the broad range of the shock platform after the high correction, and the average price of aluminum ingot market is 17450 yuan/ton, up 5.10% compared with the recent recovery starting point (July 14, 2022). The recent high price of aluminum appeared on December 5, and the average market price of aluminum ingots was 19536.67 yuan/ton, down 6.13%.


Overview of fundamentals


1. Inventory data


As of February 27, the domestic mainstream social inventory was 1.251 million tons, 1.076 million tons compared with the social inventory at the beginning of the month (February 2), and 185000 tons accumulated.


2. Production data


Benzalkonium chloride

In January, China’s domestic primary aluminum output was 3.4 million tons, with an average daily output of about 110000 tons, slightly lower than that in December last year. Regional supply: Sichuan and Guangxi continue to resume production, with a total of 16 tons expected to resume production in February; Gansu and Inner Mongolia’s new investment is expected to reach 40000 tons this month; Yunnan is expected to reduce production by 3.7-80 million tons; Overall, at the end of February, the production capacity of electrolytic aluminum fell back to 39.6 million tons.


3. Downstream commencement


By the end of the month, the operating rate of domestic leading aluminum downstream processing enterprises had risen to 61.8%. From the perspective of products, the operating rate of aluminum strip and aluminum foil plate is relatively good, except for aluminum alloy plate. Downstream operation has a positive trend as a whole, and it is expected that the short-term operation rate will maintain an upward trend.


Macroscopic factors


The minutes of the meeting of the Federal Reserve from January 31 to February 1 said that most officials supported the interest rate increase by 25 basis points, because the slower pace “will enable them to better evaluate the progress of the economy in reducing the inflation rate to 2%.” However, a “small number” of participants at the meeting directly supported the interest rate increase by 50 basis points, or said that “they may support” the interest rate increase by 50 basis points at that time. The US PCE data in January outperformed expectations, which may push up the expectations of the Federal Reserve for higher terminal interest rates to some extent. The US dollar rose strongly, and non-ferrous commodities were under pressure as a whole. The expectation that the Federal Reserve will increase the tightening force has made the aluminum price downward under pressure.


Aftermarket forecast


On the supply side, the recent production reduction of boots in Yunnan has been implemented, and the production reduction capacity is slightly higher than expected, and the positive expectation in the early stage is gradually digested. From the inventory data, the downstream consumption has improved, the operating rate of processing enterprises has risen significantly, but it is less than expected, the social inventory of electrolytic aluminum has increased slightly, and it is still in the trend of accumulation, and the inventory of downstream aluminum rods is still out of stock. In the short term, electrolytic aluminum will be suppressed by macro factors, and it is expected that the operation will be mainly weak, and the downstream consumption will be seen in the future.

Cobalt prices stopped falling and rose in February

Domestic cobalt price stopped falling and rising in February


Benzalkonium chloride

According to the data monitoring of the Business Agency, as of February 28, the cobalt price was 302500 yuan/ton, up 2.13% from 296200 yuan/ton on February 1. The supply of cobalt market was limited and the demand recovered. The international cobalt price stopped falling and rose, while the domestic cobalt price fell first and then rose.


International cobalt price stops falling and rises


From the trend chart of MB cobalt price, it can be seen that in February, the MB cobalt price stopped falling and rebounded, the international cobalt price stopped falling, the domestic cobalt market turned from bad to good, and the domestic cobalt price’s downward pressure weakened and the upward momentum increased.


Domestic cobalt market demand is expected to increase


In the first week of the Spring Festival in 2023, the price of nickel sulfate continued to rise, the price of battery grade nickel sulfate was inversely higher than that of cobalt sulfate, the cost performance ratio of high nickel and low cobalt ternary batteries was weakened, the need for cobalt removal of ternary batteries became weaker, high nickel and low cobalt became the chicken ribs, and the demand of cobalt market was expected to increase; The demand for cobalt in traditional alloys, magnetic materials and other markets recovered slowly.


Sales of new energy vehicles declined in January


According to the data released by the China Automobile Association on the 10th, the production and sales of new energy vehicles in China reached 425000 and 408000 respectively in January 2023, down 46.6% and 49.9% on a month-on-month basis and 6.9% and 6.3% on a year-on-year basis. According to the data released by the Passenger Transport Federation, the wholesale sales of new energy passenger vehicles reached 389000 in January, down 7.3% year-on-year and 48.2% month-on-month. In January, the retail sales of new energy passenger vehicles reached 332000, down 6.3% year-on-year and 48.3% month-on-month. The production and sales of new energy vehicles both declined on a month-on-month basis, the demand for cobalt market declined, and the pressure on cobalt price decline increased.


South Africa’s transportation is blocked and supply of cobalt is limited


In February, seven provinces in South Africa were hit by rainstorm and triggered floods. The floods in South Africa affected transportation. Since February, the power crisis in South Africa has intensified, and large-scale power outages have occurred in South Africa. In the short term, the supply of cobalt market is limited, while the demand of domestic cobalt market has warmed up, and the risk of shortage of cobalt market has increased.


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Local new energy vehicle policies


Eight departments, including the First Equipment Industry Division of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, issued the Notice on Organizing the Pilot Work of Comprehensive Electrification of Vehicles in the Public Sector to promote the development of the new energy vehicle industry; Nanjing continues to implement the policy of exemption from vehicle purchase tax for new energy vehicles; Hunan pointed out in the “20 items of stable growth” that the policy of replacing new energy vehicles with capital subsidies should be continued to drive the production and consumption of new energy vehicles; The People’s Government of Guangdong Province is now printing and distributing the Implementation Plan of Guangdong Province’s Carbon Peak, which proposes to vigorously develop the new energy automobile industry; Sichuan Province should implement the policy of exemption from vehicle purchase tax on new energy vehicles and carry out a series of consumption promotion activities such as new energy vehicles. The new energy vehicle sales are expected to rise, and the demand for cobalt market is expected to rise.


Overview and prospect


Bai Jiaxin, a data analyst at Business News, believes that the international cobalt price has stopped rising, which is good for the domestic cobalt market, and the production and sales of new energy vehicles are less than expected, which is bad for the domestic cobalt market; High nickel and low cobalt have become chicken ribs. The comparison of battery cobalt removal has weakened, and the demand for cobalt is expected to rise. There is a large price difference between electrolytic cobalt and cobalt salt. The profit of electrolytic cobalt enterprises is better than that of cobalt salt enterprises, and the production scheduling of electrolytic cobalt production enterprises is increased; Limited transportation in South Africa affects the supply of cobalt market, which is expected to decrease. In the future, the expected growth of demand and supply in the cobalt market is limited, and it is expected that the cobalt market in the future will recover slightly.