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July 29, 2015

Volume 17 Issue 52

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Index Gauges Specialty Chemicals Market

The American Chemistry Council launched a U.S. specialty chemical market volume index designed to provide a timely source of market trends for 28 market and functional specialty chemical segments, including segments relating to the lubricants industry.

Patrick Hurston, a spokesman for American Chemistry Council, said the specialty chemicals volume index is based on production volumes. He explained the council’s economist pulls the data together from a variety of sources, including surveys and market research.

“There didn’t seem to be a report similar to this, and there seemed to be growing interest in the specialty chemicals market,” Hurston told Lube Report. “Both in terms of being able to be a barometer of what’s going on in different market sectors but also, there’s more and more public scrutiny of certain chemistries. We did see a need for putting something out and providing some information to folks.”

All numbers indicate percentage change in production volumes on a three-month moving average basis.

The index includes several segments relevant to the lubricants industry, including lubricant additives, corrosion inhibitors, biocides and oilfield chemicals. Other segments of interest in the index include printing ink and rubber processing, which are key markets for naphthenic process oils.

Lubricant additives volume in June was up 1.6 percent from May, and was up 2.5 percent from a year earlier. Year-to-date through June, lubricant additives volume was up 1.5 percent from the same period in 2014.

Biocides volume in June was up down 0.1 percent from May but up 4.3 percent compared to a year earlier. Year-to-date through June, biocides volume was up 4.9 percent compared to the year-earlier period.

Corrosion inhibitors volume was down 0.5 percent in June from May and down 0.5 percent compared to a year earlier. Year-to-date through June, corrosion inhibitors were up 1.8 percent.

Oilfield chemicals volume in June was down 2 percent from May and down 14.5 compared to a year earlier. For the first six months of 2015, oil field chemicals volume was down 8 percent compared to the same period last year.

Printing ink volume in June was unchanged from May and up 5.1 compared to June 2014. Year-to-date through June, printing ink was up 4.9 percent compared to the year-earlier period.

Rubber processing in June was also unchanged from May but up 7.1 percent compared to June 2014. Year-to-date through June, rubber processing was up 7.4 percent compared to the first six months of 2014.

The ACC publishes monthly updates about its specialty chemicals market volume index at its website’s News Releases section.