Lost manufacturing resulting in slower US petchem growth

The US petrochemical business is experiencing a lower level of growth due to lost manufacturing or “deindustrialization” trends. This situation is more prevalent during each down cycle, when downstream manufacturing moves into other countries even faster. Less demand causes lower profits and, in turn, the shutting down of finished-goods plants in the US.Suppliers in lower-cost regions pick up the slack and expand production volumes. For instance, in the last worldwide olefins down cycle, whose low point occurred in 2001, domestic demand and exports for ethylene derivatives declined by about 8% and 33%, respectively. At the same time, China increased its imports of the same der...

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