Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Chemical Elements’ Revenues - Part 1


The table below presents estimated global revenues generated in 2018 by each chemical element (the periodic table of elements).  Elements not listed had no revenues above $10 million.   Also provided is an expected compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of revenues for each element from 2018 to 2023.

chemical element
2018 revenues in billions of usd
compound annual growth rate in % 2018 to 2023
Iron
231.00
5
Aluminum
151.53
6
Copper
151.00
4
Hydrogen
132.30
7
Gold
128.00
6
Phosphorus
67.50
4
Zinc
52.10
4
Chlorine
33.80
6
Potassium
28.00
4
Lead
27.60
0
Nickel
27.50
4
Carbon
23.70
9
Calcium
23.60
7
Oxygen
21.50
8
Nitrogen
15.80
5
Chromium
14.50
3
Silver
14.00
2
Silicon
13.70
5
Vanadium
9.70
3
Titanium
9.60
4
Cobalt
8.80
10
Palladium
8.00
3
Molybdenum
7.50
3
Tin
7.00
3
Platinum
6.30
7
Sulfur
6.20
3
Helium
5.80
6
Zirconium
5.00
7
Bromine
3.85
10
Uranium
3.50
0
Technetium (radio isotope)
3.30
9
Tungsten
3.10
6
Niobium
2.90
6
Boron
2.25
2
Magnesium
2.00
6
Antimony
2.00
6
Scandium
1.84
12
Lithium
1.63
9
Barium
1.40
4
Neodymium
1.30
8
Iodine
0.86
4
Fluorine
0.67
7
Praseodymium
0.46
6
Indium
0.45
7
Strontium
0.44
5
Tantalum
0.42
4
Sodium
0.39
3
Yttrium
0.39
13
Ruthenium
0.35
0
Argon
0.32
6
Dysprosium
0.24
6
Terbium
0.21
6
Xenon
0.21
4
Germanium
0.19
7
Erbium
0.17
6
Gallium
0.16
5
Lutetium
0.15
9
Hafnium
0.14
9
Beryllium
0.13
3
Cerium
0.13
6
Bismuth
0.10
5
Lanthanum
0.10
6
Ytterbium
0.09
6
Rhenium
0.09
7
Rhodium
0.08
3
Selenium
0.08
2
Mercury
0.07
1
Thallium
0.07
0
Manganese
0.06
4
Gadolinium
0.05
6
Krypton
0.05
5
Cadmium
0.04
3
Neon
0.04
4
Arsenic
0.03
1
Holmium
0.03
6
Iridium
0.02
0
Europium
0.02
6
Tellurium
0.02
3
Samarium
0.01
6
total
1267.61
4


average


The revenues were obtained from market research reports and other sources found on the Internet.   The revenues shown are not expected to be exact but reasonably good estimates.   Knowing accurately such revenues is difficult; revenue estimates, like all estimates, are based on various assumptions and knowledge limitations, which make accuracy difficult.   Often different revenues are reported in market research reports and other sources, requiring best guesses for the revenues used in the table.   In some cases, I used average 2018 element prices and estimated element consumptions to calculate a revenue.

The revenues are met to represent what was obtained for the element initially produced (i.e., extracted, mined, processed) and then presented to a market for sale.   The revenues are not met to represent what the element might generated in further uses and consequent sales (e.g., revenues generated by sulfuric acid, after it is made using sulfur).  For carbon, the revenues represent sales of activated carbon, graphite, and carbon fibers.  One element, technetium, is radioactive and generates substantial revenues only as a radionuclide used in medicine.   Other radioactive elements also are used as radionuclides, but their revenues were not obtained.

This data was searched for and presented because it seems to me that it might provide some useful insights.   For example, it is of interest to me to know the relative economic importance of chemical elements, as represented by the revenues they are generating.   The compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of the revenues is of interest in indicating an average for all chemical elements (the table shows 4%), possibly useful as a benchmark.   Also showing those elements with higher CAGRs might be useful for decision making, e.g., those elements may be in short supply.

In my next blog (Chemical Elements’ Revenues – Part 2), I will separate the elements into functional groups, such as industrial gasses and rare earth metals, and show and discuss the groups’ revenues and CAGRs.