WASHINGTON (October 30, 2020; ACC news release) — Data collected and tabulated by the American Chemistry Council (ACC) show that global chemicals production rose 1.5 percent in September, a slower pace from August, but extending the global recovery that began in June.
During September, chemical production showed fairly strong growth in every region. Headline global production was stable year-over-year (Y/Y) on a three-month moving average (3MMA) basis, but off 0.9 percent from the peak December level. Global output stood at 117.5 percent of its average 2012 levels.
During September, global capacity rose 0.1 percent and was up 2.4 percent Y/Y. With improving production, capacity utilization in the global chemical industry rose 1.0 points, to 80.0 percent. This is down from 82.0 percent last September and below the long-term (1987-2017) average of 86.5 percent.
Among chemical industry segments, September results were positive, with gains across all segments except agricultural chemicals, which was stable. Considering year-earlier comparisons, growth was mixed, with gains in plastic resins, synthetic rubber, manufactured fibers, bulk petrochemicals and organics, inorganic chemicals, agricultural chemicals and consumer products but with a large year-earlier decline in coatings.