Gas and utility production lead industrial output gain, ACC report says
Industrial production rose by 0.4% in March, according to data from the U.S. Federal Reserve Board (Washington, D.C.; www.federalreserve.gov) that was discussed in the latest Weekly Chemistry and Economic Report from the American Chemistry Council (ACC; Washington, D.C.; www.americanchemistry.com).
The March industrial production level is the highest since the recession, and is 99.5% of its average 2007 level, says the ACC report. “The increase in March reflected strong gains in natural gas and electric utility production (in part due to unseasonably cold weather),” ACC notes.
Within the manufacturing sector, outputs of machinery, motor vehicles, textiles, printing and chemicals rose, while other manufacturing areas, as well as mining, fell, the ACC report points out. In the chemical industry, overall production rose 0.2% in March, to 87.8% of its average 2007 value The pattern of production in chemistry, however, over the past several months, has been uneven, the ACC report says.
Taking a look at the wider economy, the ACC report says the week’s economic data were mixed overall. The housing recovery in the U.S. continued to advance, the report says, and consumer prices fell as gasoline prices declined.