U.S. Chemical Production Edged Lower In March

|Apr 23|magazine9 min read

WASHINGTON, April 23, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) edged lower by 1.1 percent in March following a 0.1 percent decline in February and flat growth in January. During March, chemical output declined across all regions. The lower level of activity is directly related to supply chain disruptions and the lockdown of much of the U.S. economy during the second half of March.

Although the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has designated chemical manufacturers as essential, production has eased in many chemical segments. Supply chains tied to personal protective equipment (PPE) and disinfection products have seen increased production, however.

Nearly all manufactured goods are produced using chemistry in some form. Thus, manufacturing activity is an important indicator for chemical production. With many factories shut down during the latter part of March, overall manufacturing activity fell by 2.2 percent on a three-month moving average (3MMA) basis, with declines across all industry sectors except computers and electronics.

Compared with March 2019, U.S. chemical production was off by 2.4 percent on a year-over-year (Y/Y) basis, the tenth and highest consecutive month of Y/Y declines. Chemical production was lower than a year ago in all regions, with the largest declines in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and West Coast regions.


U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index, Percentage Change

(Seasonally adjusted, 3-month moving average)


Mar 20/
Feb 20

Mar 20/
Mar 19

Key products


Gulf Coast

-0.7%

-0.2%

petrochemicals, inorganics, plastics resins, and synthetic rubber


Midwest

-1.4%

-3.1%

agricultural chemicals, plastics, and paints


Ohio Valley

-1.7%

-3.9%

organic chemicals, plastics and synthetic materials, and specialty chemicals


Mid-Atlantic

-1.8%

-4.7%

consumer products


Southeast

-1.5%

-3.4%

inorganic chemicals, fibers, and consumer products


Northeast

-1.8%

-4.8%

consumer products and specialty chemicals


West Coast

-1.8%

-4.6%

basic chemicals, agricultural chemicals, and consumer products


     U.S. Total

-1.1%

-2.4%









The chemistry industry is one of the largest industries in the United States, a $553 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 to track chemical production activity in seven regions of the United States. The U.S. CPRI is based on information from the Federal Reserve, and as such, includes monthly revisions as published by 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 March reflects production activity during January, February, and March.

http://www.americanchemistry.com/newsroom 
The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry.  ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people's lives better, healthier and safer.  ACC is committed to improved environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care, common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues, and health and environmental research and product testing.  The business of chemistry is a $553 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation's economy.  It is one of the nation's largest exporters, representing ten cents out of every dollar in U.S. exports. Chemistry companies are among the largest investors in research and development.  Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the nation's critical infrastructure.

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SOURCE American Chemistry Council