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U.S. Chemical Production Continues Growth Trend; Production Up 1.2 Percent Over Year Ago


Contact: Patrick Hurston (202) 249-6506  
Email: patrick_hurston@americanchemistry.com

‒ All major producing regions see solid gains for second consecutive month ‒

WASHINGTON (February 21, 2013) – According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) rose by 0.7 percent in January, following a revised 0.9 percent gain in December. Chemical production rose in all major producing regions for the second consecutive month.

On a three-month moving average (3MMA), output of the nation’s overall manufacturing sector rose by 0.8 percent in January, following a 0.7 percent gain in December. Within the manufacturing sector, output in several key chemistry end-use markets increased, including appliances, motor vehicles, aerospace, construction supplies, machinery, computers, plastics products, paper, structural panels, textile products, printing, apparel, and furniture.

Also measured on a 3MMA basis, there were gains in production of organic chemicals, industrial gases, inorganic chemicals, plastic resins, synthetic rubber, man-made fibers, consumer products, coatings and adhesives. These gains were offset by declines in the production of pesticides and fertilizers. Pharmaceutical production was flat.

Compared to January 2012, total chemical production in all regions was up 0.9 percent and remained ahead year-over-year in all regions except the Mid-Atlantic and West Coast regions which were off from a year ago. Year-ago comparisons are improving for the U.S. as a whole with all regions trending upward on a Y/Y basis.

The chemistry industry is one of the largest industries in the United States, a $760 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 U.S. 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. Thus, the reading in January reflects production activity during November, December, and January.

Following a 1.1 percent gain in December, chemical production in the Gulf Coast region rose by 0.8 percent in January. Compared to a year ago, production was up 3.0 percent. 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 rose 0.7 percent during January, following a 0.9 percent increase in December. Compared to January 2012, Midwest chemical production was up 0.3 percent year-over-year.

In the Ohio Valley region, which is largely influenced by production of basic chemicals, plastics and synthetic rubber, coatings, and consumer products, chemical production rose by 0.9 percent in January, following a 1.3 percent gain in December. Compared to January 2012, production in the region was up by 5.0 percent.

In the Mid-Atlantic region, where pharmaceutical manufacturing is prominent, chemical production rose by 0.7 percent in January, following a revised 0.9 percent gain in December. Mid-Atlantic chemical production was off 0.7 percent compared to January 2012.

In the Southeast region, which is influenced heavily by production of basic chemicals, fibers, agricultural and other chemical products, chemical production rose by 0.7 percent in January, following a 0.8 percent gain during December. Southeast region chemical production was up 0.3 percent year-over-year.

In the Northeast region, which is influenced by pharmaceutical manufacturing and other specialty chemical manufacturing, chemical production rose 0.7 percent in January, following a 0.9 percent gain during December. Compared to January 2012, Northeast region chemical production was up 0.2 percent.

In the West Coast region, chemical production was up 0.7 percent in January, following a revised 0.7 percent gain in December. Chemical production in the West Coast region was off 1.7 percent from last year.

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