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American Chemistry Council Releases July 2011 Chemical Production Regional Index


Contact: Jenny Heumann (202) 249-6520  
Email: jenny_heumann@americanchemistry.com 

Data Shows Chemical Production Continues to Improve in All Regions

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 17, 2011) – According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) fell 0.3 percent in July, following a 0.3 percent decline in June, as chemical production slipped in all regions.

Output of the nation’s manufacturing sector rose 0.6 percent in July, following a 0.2 percent gain during June. The gain was led by a rebound in the auto sector following several months of reduced activity due to the Japanese tsunami-triggered supply disruptions. Production also expanded in several other key end-use markets for chemistry products, including wood products; computers and electronics; furniture; construction materials; paper; textiles; and plastic and rubber products.

Output of chemistry products slipped during the month of July. Recent data for July show gains in production of petrochemicals, inorganic chemicals, plastic resins, synthetic rubber, industrial gases, dyes and pigments, adhesives, fertilizers, and pesticides, which were offset by declines in pharmaceuticals, consumer products, man-made fibers, coatings, and other specialties.

Compared to July 2010, total chemical production in all regions was up 2.7 percent and remained ahead year-over-year in all regions. Year-over-year comparisons have steadily declined in the Gulf Coast region and have eased or remained stable in the past month in all other regions. Chemical output remains below its pre-recession peak as the manufacturing sector and global export markets have softened in recent months.

The chemistry industry is one of the largest industries in the United States, a $720 billion enterprise. The manufacturing sector is the largest consumer of chemical products, and 96 percent of manufactured goods are touched by chemistry.

The U.S. CPRI was developed by Moore Economics to track chemical production activity in seven regions of the United States. It is comparable to the United States industrial production index for chemicals published by the Federal Reserve. The U.S. CPRI is based on information from the Federal Reserve. To smooth month-to-month fluctuations, the U.S. CPRI is measured using a three-month moving average (3MMA). The reading in July reflects production activity during May, June, and July.

Following a revised 1.2 percent decline in June, chemical production in the Gulf Coast region slipped again by 0.4 percent in July. Compared to a year ago, production was up 0.8 percent, and up 2.9 percent on a year-to-date basis. The Gulf Coast region is dominated by the production of key building block materials, such as petrochemicals, inorganics, and synthetic materials.

In the Midwest region, which is influenced by production of agricultural chemicals, plastics, paints, and other chemical products, chemical production fell 0.3 percent in July, following a revised 0.4 percent decline in June. Compared to July 2010, Midwest chemical production was up 1.9 percent year-over-year, and up 1.9 percent on a year-to-date basis.

In the Ohio Valley region, which is largely influenced by production of basic chemicals, plastics and synthetic rubber, coatings, and consumer products, chemical production slipped by 0.5 percent in July, following a revised 0.5 percent decline in June. Compared to July 2010, production in the region was up by 3.7 percent, and up 3.5 percent on a year-to-date basis.

In the Mid-Atlantic region, where pharmaceutical manufacturing is prominent, chemical production was off 0.3 percent in July, following a revised 0.1 percent decline in June. Mid-Atlantic chemical production was up 2.2 percent compared to July 2010, and up 1.7 percent on a year-to-date basis.

In the Southeast region, which is influenced heavily by production of basic chemicals, fibers, agricultural and other chemical products, chemical production fell 0.4 percent in July, following a revised 0.4 percent decline in June. Southeast region chemical production was up 3.2 percent year-over-year, and up 2.3 percent on a year-to-date basis.

In the Northeast region, which is influenced by pharmaceutical manufacturing and other specialty chemical manufacturing, chemical production fell 0.3 percent in July, following a revised 0.2 percent gain during June. Compared to July 2010, Northeast region chemical production was up 3.5 percent, and up 2.3 percent on a year-to-date basis.

In the West Coast region, chemical production fell 0.3 percent in July, following a revised 0.1 percent decline in June. Chemical production in the West Coast region was up 2.0 percent from last year, and up 1.2 percent on a year-to-date basis.

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