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Chemical Week Magazine :: Departments :: Leading Indicators

Free Fall

8:14 AM MST | March 9, 2009 | Arnold Pearlman

The leading indicator for the chemical industry fell 4.2% in February, its sixth-consecutive monthly decline. Industrial production in the chemical-process industries—which includes building materials, nonferrous metals, paper, petroleum products, and rubber and plastics—fell 1.9% in January, following a 3.2% drop in December. Overall manufacturing output fell 2.6% in January, with durables off 4.8% and nondurables down 0.5%. Chemical production fell 0.4%. Manufacturing output fell at an annualized rate of 17.7% in the fourth quarter 2008. Housing...

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