October 2019

Chemical activity declines in October, says American Chemistry Council’s CAB report

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) reported that the Chemical Activity Barometer (CAB) fell 0.4% in October on a three-month moving average following stable activity during the third quarter. On a year-over-year basis, the barometer was off by 0.5%. The CAB consists of indicators from production, equity prices, product prices and inventories.

The unadjusted measure of the CAB for October showed a 0.7% decline. The diffusion index fell to 47% in October—the first time since May 2016 that it was below 5%. The diffusion index marks the number of positive contributors relative to the total number of indicators monitored. The CAB reading for September was revised downward by 0.44 points and that for August by 0.25 points.

“The CAB signals a pronounced slowdown in U.S. commerce through the second quarter of 2020,” said Kevin Swift, Chief Economist at ACC.

Production-related indicators in October were mixed. Performance chemistry eased, reflecting the global manufacturing slowdown. U.S. exports were mixed, equity prices slumped and product and input prices fell. Inventory and other indicators were positive.

To see the full report, visit https://www.americanchemistry.com/CAB-vs-Industrial-Production/.