The U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) slipped by 0.1 % in June, following a downwardly revised 0.5 % decline in May, according to the American Chemistry Council (ACC). Compared to 2011, total chemistry production in all regions was up by 0.3 %, but was down year-over-year in all regions except the Gulf Coast and Ohio Valley.
Activity for July is flat.
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 % of manufactured goods are touched by chemistry.
Gains in the output of inorganic chemicals, industrial gases; consumer products; pesticides; coatings and synthetic rubber were offset by lower production of plastic resins; fertilizers; adhesives; organic chemicals; and pharmaceuticals.
The financial crisis in Europe and slowdown in China and other emerging economies continue to take a toll on demand for U.S. exports.
Despite a weakened outlook for gross domestic product (GDP) growth, global chemistry continues to advance, with expectations for output of chemicals in emerging markets to outpace production in developed countries. China will continue to grow strongly, but at a slower pace than the previous decade. India, Africa, Latin America and other emerging markets will continue to expand, with the strongest growth in 2012 expected in specialty chemicals, consumer products, and agricultural chemicals. Overall, American chemistry output is anticipated to rise by 0.5 % in 2012.
In the chemical industry, strong gains in capital spending by American chemistry are expected during the next several years. This is a result of the announced new investment in petrochemicals and derivatives arising from shale gas developments. Capital spending are said to reach $35.5 billion in 2012 and will steadily rise to $51.5 billion in 2017.
- American Chemistry Council (ACC), Washington, D.C., USA