Chemical Production Falls Due to Hurricane Disruptions
The steep decline in September reportedly reflected severe, but temporary, disruptions from Hurricane Harvey.
According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) fell by 1.4% in September, following a 0.2% decline in August, and a 1% gain in July. The steep decline in September reportedly reflected severe, but temporary, disruptions from Hurricane Harvey. During September, output declined in all regions except the West Coast which posted flat growth.
Chemical production was mixed over the same three-month period. There were gains in the production three-month moving average output trend of consumer products, pharmaceuticals, coatings, other specialty chemicals, and others. These gains were reportedly offset by declines in the output trend in organic chemicals, plastic resins, manufactured fibers, chlor-alkali, other organic chemicals, adhesives and synthetic rubber.
On a three-month-moving average basis, manufacturing activity edged lower by 0.1% in September, following a similar decline in August. Production expanded in several chemistry-intensive manufacturing industries, including food and beverages; aerospace; construction supplies; fabricated metal products; computers and electronics; semiconductors; plastic and rubber products; and structural panels.
Compared to September 2016, U.S. chemical production was ahead 1.2% on a year-over-year basis, a declining trend. Chemical production was ahead of year ago levels in all regions except the Gulf Coast on a year-over-year basis.
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