WASHINGTON—Market volumes of rubber processing chemicals have improved in recent months, but are still down significantly for the year so far, according to the American Chemistry Council.
The Washington, D.C.-based trade group is out with its latest report on specialty chemicals that shows a month-to-month 3.1-percent improvement for rubber processing chemicals in September and an 8-percent hike in August. But year-to-date volume is still off by 21.3 percent, and year-over-year volume has declined by 5.3 percent.
For adhesives and sealants, September volumes held steady compared with August, but are down 8.1 percent year-over-year and 7.8 percent year-to-date. Antioxidants were up 1 percent from August to September, down 7.6 percent from September 2019 to September 2020 and off 13.4 percent year-to-date.
Coatings saw a miniscule dip of 0.1 percent in September compared with August, a 4.9-percent decrease year-over-year and 5.9 percent decrease year-to-date. Specialty chemical market volume for flame retardants increased by 1 percent in September from August, fell 3.3 percent year-over-year and fell 7.5 percent year-to-date, ACC said. Plasticizers fell 1.3 percent in September, 8.1 percent year-over-year and 6.8 percent year-to-date.
U.S. total volume for specialty chemicals was flat from August to September, but down 8.1 percent year-over-year and off 7.8 percent year-to-date, ACC said.
"Specialty chemicals differ from commodity chemicals. Specialties may only have one or two uses, whereas commodities may have multiple or different applications for each chemical," the trade group said.