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Chemical Week Magazine :: Departments :: Leading Indicators

Recession Looming

9:55 AM MST | February 4, 2008 | Arnold Pearlman

The leading indicator for the chemical industry eked out a small gain in January following a slight decline in the previous month, but analysts do not believe that a positive trend is under way. Manufacturing output fell at an annualized rate of 1.9% in the final quarter of 2007, after rising 3.9% in the previous three months. Production of durable goods declined 1.5%, while nondurables dropped 2.4%. Output fell in almost all industries including chemicals, which posted a 0.7% decline. Manufacturing employment also fell in the fourth quarter, although analysts...

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