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U.S. chemical production declined in Sept., ACC says

| By Scott Jenkins

Reflecting ongoing hurricane disruptions and supply chain challenges, the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) fell by 1.5% in September, following a 0.4% decline in August and a 1.1% gain in July, according to the American Chemistry Council (ACC; Washington, D.C.; Chemical output fell sharply in the Gulf Coast region and declined in other regions, ACC said. The U.S. CPRI is measured as a three-month moving average (3MMA).

Chemical production was mixed in September (3MMA), showing an improving trend in the production of synthetic rubber, manufactured fibers, other specialty chemicals, fertilizers, crop protection chemicals, adhesives, coatings, and consumer products. These gains were offset by weakness in organic chemicals, plastic resins, basic inorganic chemicals, and industrial gases.

As nearly all manufactured goods are produced using chemistry in some form, manufacturing activity is an important indicator for chemical demand. Following a 0.4% gain in August, manufacturing output expanded by 0.2% in September (3MMA). The 3MMA trend in manufacturing production was mixed, with gains seen in the output of appliances, aerospace, construction supplies, fabricated metal products, machinery, computers, iron and steel products, plastic products, paper, printing, textile mill products, apparel, and furniture.

Compared with September 2020, U.S. chemical production was up 3.5%, a weaker comparison than last month. Chemical production was higher than a year ago in all regions.