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Dow Chemical To Close 3 Louisiana Plants

Wed, 07/01/2009 - 4:23am

MIDLAND, Mich. (AP) — Dow Chemical will close three Louisiana plants as the company shifts away from basic chemicals and more toward the lucrative business of specialty chemicals, the company said Wednesday

Dow has said it will cut about 2,500 jobs as part of a restructuring that came with the acquisition of rival Rohm & Haas. About 100 jobs, part of that restructuring, will be cut with the closure of the plants, but most employees will be offered jobs elsewhere.

The plants that will be closed make ethylene, which is used in everything from packaging to plastic bags.

The company bought rival Rohm & Haas in April for more than $16 billion, a deal that added massive amounts of debt to its balance sheet, but gave the company a strong position in the specialty chemicals market.

Dow says closing the plants will lead to savings of more than $100 million a year, part of a multibillion-dollar restructuring.

Shares of Dow rose 6 cents to $16.20 in premarket trading.

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