OxyChem says its fourth-quarter earnings for chemicals were up 19%, to $180.0 million, primarily because of higher export volumes for caustic soda and vinyl chloride monomer, and lower ethylene costs. Chemical segment sales were up 4.1%, to $1.14 billion. Full-year 2012 chemical earnings were $720.0 million, down 16% from the year-ago period, primarily because of lower margins caused by weaker economic conditions in Europe and Asia, and increased competitive activity from these regions, the company says. The calcium chloride and potassium hydroxide businesses...
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