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May 16, 2014

Regional differences in latest OECD CLI data, ACC report says

Scott Jenkins

Data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD; Paris; www.oecd.org) composite leading indicator(CLI) for March show divergence, depending on the region, according to the latest Weekly Chemistry and Economic Report from the American Chemistry Council (ACC; Washington, D.C.; www.americanchemistry.com).
 
The CLI data “point to growth below trend in Brazil, China and India, and to growth losing momentum in Russia,” said the ACC report. “For the OECD as a whole, and for the U.S., Canada and Japan, the CLIs point to stable growth momentum,” ACC added.
 
Growth stabilizing at above-trend rates seems to be the case in the U.K. also, the ACC said, and CLIs for the Euro Area as a whole “continue to indicate a positive change in momentum.”
 
The OECD CLI is designed to provide early signals of turning points (peaks and troughs) between expansions and slowdowns of economic activity. In addition to the developed nations, the OECD has also developed CLIs for the major six OECD non-member economies (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Russian Federation and South Africa). As a result, the CLI for the OECD+6 is a good leading indicator for global economic activity. The CLI+6 was stable in March and was up 3.2% Y/Y on a 3MMA basis, ACC explained.
 
Meanwhile, for the chemical industry in the U.S., overall production of the business of chemistry was stable at 89.0% of its average 2007 level during April, the ACC report said. “Pharmaceutical production fell 1.1% and, as a result, excluding pharmaceuticals, production rose 0.5% and follows a 0.6% gain in March and a 1.3% gain in February,” ACC said.
 
“During April, production of basic chemicals rose 0.6%, with a 1.6% gain in petrochemicals and organic intermediates offsetting weakness in inorganic chemicals, plastic resins, synthetic rubber, and manufactured fibers,” the report explains.
 
Production of specialty chemicals rose 3.2% in April, with strength across-the-board in coatings, adhesives and sealants and other specialty segments, the report pointed out, adding that production rose in agricultural chemicals but fell in consumer products.
 
Compared to the same period in 2013, overall production of chemicals is up 2.0% Y/Y on a three-month moving average basis.

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