Q1 2014 outlook - Fluorspar trends
Published: Tuesday, 07 January 2014
Downloadable: IM Data summarises the trends which defined the fluorspar market in 2013 and looks ahead to what's in store for the industry over the coming quarter
The seasonal shutdown in Chinese fluorspar production provoked
increases in acid-grade
fluorspar (acidspar) prices in October, resulting in the
first price rise seen in 2013.
Chinese acidspar prices rose by 4.5% as sales increased in
anticipation of a dearth in supply over the winter months. This
upturn helped to clear some of the backlog in supplies which
had accumulated throughout the year.
Although this revival in industry activity was not limited to
the Chinese market, price increases failed to materialise
outside of China. European and Mexican prices were stable
throughout the quarter.
Similarly, metspar prices remained unchanged approaching the
new year with minimal growth in steel production meaning
overcapacities continued to weigh heavy on the
While the chances of a sustained period of price recovery
remain hampered by congestion throughout the supply chain, an
upturn in Chinese industrial activity and an improvement in US
economic growth provide a positive platform for market
development in 2014.
As expansion in Chinas
downstream markets continues into the new year, domestic
demand in the country is expected to increase. This situation
with the continuing pursuit of industry consolidation is likely
to have repercussions on trade patterns within the
A reduction in Chinese exports will leave room for new projects to come
onstream. However in the short-term, demand will have to
increase to prevent this having an adverse effect on
In Q1 2014 this growth is expected to come from greater
stability in Europe and the US which will boost fluorochemical
demand. In particular, fluoropolymers are forecast to be a big
area of end-market growth this year.
Nevertheless, these developments are unlikely to have a major
impact on the market prior to Q2 2014, meaning prices are
expected to remain relatively stable for much of Q1 2014.
Download full outlook here