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Global Plastics Additives Market Expected to Grow

February 6, 2015 9:59 am | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

The market research included companies such as BASF, Exxon Mobil, Bayer Ag., Zeon Chemicals, Dow Plastic Additives and others. It looked at the growth potential for chemicals added to polymer/plastic processing and production, including plasticizers, flame retardants, UV stabilizers, antioxidants and others.

The Wild World of Predicting Oil Prices

February 5, 2015 3:32 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Videos | Comments

Oil prices yo-yoed this week, giving analysts whip lash as they hurried to decide what it all means, and forecast what the future holds. On Wednesday the price of a barrel had fallen to about $48, but by Thursday was back up to $52. And as quickly as some were to determine that prices were rallying, other chimed in to point out that it likely won’t last.

North Dakota Oil Industry Avoids Layoffs

February 5, 2015 11:43 am | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The months-long slide in crude oil prices has resulted in thousands of layoffs in Texas, the nation's top oil-producing state. In second-place North Dakota, however, the burgeoning shale oil and natural gas sector will apparently be spared mass job cuts in the short term.

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President Barack Obama is satisfying a year-old pledge by announcing the creation of two Pentagon-led institutes that will combine public and private resources to foster manufacturing innovation.

Obama Budget Includes Extra Funding For OSHA

February 5, 2015 11:38 am | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

The proposals, however, are likely to meet resistance from Republicans, many of whom have expressed concerns about regulatory overreach during the Obama administration. OSHA, which conducts safety inspections at worksites, would receive funding to improve its enforcement of more than 20 whistleblower protection laws, two top agency administrators wrote.

Texas Company Postpones Northeast Nebraska Plant Project

February 5, 2015 11:31 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

A Texas-based company that makes piping and casing for oil and gas drilling has postponed plans to build a manufacturing plant in northeast Nebraska. Tejas Tubular Products President Maximo Tejeda told the Norfolk Daily News that he remains committed to building a mill next to Nucor Steel in Norfolk.

ISM: Manufacturing Orders And Production Continue To Grow

February 5, 2015 9:33 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Articles | Comments

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in January for the 20th consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 68th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business.

Health, Chemical Industry Groups Spar Over Ozone Rule

February 4, 2015 11:30 am | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

Lorraine Gershman of the American Chemistry Council told officials in Washington that the current standard is "the most stringent ever and has not been fully implemented across the United States," and that areas currently classified as non-compliant with the standard — where 120 million people reside — face substantial economic obstacles.

Drugmaker Merck Posts Spike in 4Q Profit, Beats Forecasts

February 4, 2015 10:29 am | by LINDA A. JOHNSON, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Merck, the maker of blockbuster diabetes pill Januvia edged past Wall Street expectations, despite hits to revenue from multiple divestitures, patent expirations and the strong dollar, but its forecast for 2015 came in below Wall Street expectations.

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Survey: Majority of Manufacturers Plan to Bolster Mobile App Use

February 3, 2015 4:40 pm | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

Of the 111 manufacturing professionals responding to the Georgia-based company's survey, 55 percent indicated their organizations would increase their use of mobility, while 43 percent said they did not expect any changes. Eight-five percent of respondents also said their businesses planned to increase investments in their operations this year compared to 2014.

Walmart, Target Announce Efforts to Improve Chemicals in Personal Care Products

February 3, 2015 3:35 pm | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The efforts stemmed from the Beauty and Personal Care Products Sustainability Summit where event organizers concluded that product manufacturers should aim to produce safer consumer goods instead of simply relying on regulations or bans on specific chemicals.

More Oil Industry Layoffs Hit Texas

February 3, 2015 3:14 pm | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The rapid increase in domestic oil production in recent years helped fuel a banner year for Texas' economy in 2014. As the price of oil has plummeted to less than half its summer value, however, the industry continues to bear the brunt of job cuts.  

Report: Offshoring, Federal Policy Haven Taken Toll on U.S. Industry

February 3, 2015 10:50 am | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The report, titled "America’s Advanced Industries: What They Are, Where They Are, and Why They Matter," analyzed 50 high-technology industries, from aerospace to foundries to pharmaceuticals. Those sectors employed more than 12 million Americans directly and more than one-quarter of all U.S. jobs when indirect positions were factored in.

BP Reports Loss of $4.4 Billion in 4th Quarter of 2014

February 3, 2015 10:26 am | by DANICA KIRKA, Associated Press | News | Comments

The net income figure includes a $5 billion writedown on the value of BP's inventories, after the price of Brent crude, the benchmark for North Sea oil, dropped almost 50 percent last year. BP posted a profit of $1.04 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013.

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Coke Bets on 'Premium Milk' to Boost Category

February 3, 2015 10:22 am | by CANDICE CHOI, AP Food Industry Writer | News | Comments

The drink has already started appearing on shelves and is expected to continue rolling out nationally over the next several weeks. It comes in sleek, plastic bottles reminiscent of milk cartons. At a supermarket in Indianapolis, a 52-ounce bottle of Fairlife was being sold for $4.59. By comparison, the national average cost for a half-gallon of milk is $2.18...

Scientists Create Eyeglasses That Change Into Sunglasses — Within Seconds

February 3, 2015 9:37 am | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The lens is comprised of electrochromic polymers that would be controlled by a small electrical charge. When activated by the user, the charge alternates the electrochromic lens between clear and dark shades — which could be tailored to match all hues available in commercial sunglasses.

Strikes Begin At Oil Refineries; Prices Rally

February 2, 2015 4:32 pm | by Andy Szal, Chem.Info | News | Comments

The strike is the largest at refineries in more than three decades, though the workers in question represent just a fraction of the roughly 30,000 USW members working at 63 refineries and plants, which account for about two-thirds of the nation's refining capacity.

US Manufacturers Taking a Hit From Strong Dollar

February 2, 2015 10:05 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Several trends have weighed on U.S. factories in recent months. Overseas economies are weak. And the dollar has risen steadily in value as the U.S. economy's strength has attracted international investors. Both trends have weighed on American firms' export sales.

Shell Says it Will Drill Off Alaska if it Can Get Permits

January 30, 2015 10:39 am | by DAN JOLING, Associated Press | News | Comments

Royal Dutch Shell PLC will move forward with drilling off Alaska's northwest coast if it can obtain permits it needs and drill safely, its chief executive officer said Thursday. Speaking in London on the company's fourth-quarter earnings, Ben van Beurden said Shell will move forward with its plan to use two drill vessels in the Chukchi Sea, subject to getting permits and legal clearance.

Label Manufacturer to Bring 154 Jobs to Scott County

January 30, 2015 10:35 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Multi-Color Corporation announced Friday that it's investing $13 million in its 120,500 square-foot manufacturing plant in Scottsburg. The company plans to increase operating efficiency, expand production volume and bring 154 jobs to the facility by 2020.

As Global Plastic Production Rises, Recycling Efforts Fall Behind

January 29, 2015 4:47 pm | by Meagan Parrish, Editor, Chem.Info | Articles | Comments

While plastics boast numerous social benefits, such extending the shelf life of food and reducing waste, efforts to keep it from impacting the environment have failed to keep pace with its use. It’s estimated that in the U.S., only 9 percent of post-consumer plastic was recycled in 2012...

Pine Chemicals as an Engine for Economic Growth and Sustainability

January 29, 2015 2:49 pm | by Charles Morris | Blogs | Comments

Companies are looking for value-added innovations, reduced environmental impact and ways to set themselves apart from the competition, but not only that — they want to build a more sustainable, innovative business. This is where lessons from the pine resin industry can help. 

Shell to Slash Investment After Oil Price Drop Hurts Profit

January 29, 2015 10:41 am | by DANICA KIRKA, Associated Press | News | Comments

In a sign of the impact on the oil sector of the slump in energy prices, Royal Dutch Shell Plc said Thursday it plans to cut spending by $15 billion over the next three years amid a drop in earnings. Shell is the first major energy company to report earnings, so its quarterly update is watched for hints on the performance of the wider industry.

10 Resolutions For Building a Better B2B Supply Chain Operating Network in The Process Industries

January 28, 2015 4:31 pm | by Ed Rusch, vice president of Corporate Marketing at Elemica | Blogs | Comments

The inter-connectedness, expansive footprints, and co-dependency within the process industries, and the dynamic supply chain interactions in an inter-enterprise network, form the basis for these “10 Top Resolutions” to building a better Supply Chain Operating Network in 2015 and beyond. 

Education, Bias-Breaking Keys to Women's Rise in Supply Chain

January 27, 2015 2:38 pm | by Mike Hockett, Associate Editor, Industrial Distribution | Articles | Comments

Corrie Banks and Kleo Landucci, executives at logistics services providing companies, can’t stress enough how they’d like to see fellow females continue to enter the supply chain workforce and break the stereotype of it being “a man’s world.”

Supreme Court Rejects Lifetime Health Benefits For Chem Plant Employees

January 27, 2015 2:31 pm | by Andy Szal, Chem.info | News | Comments

The unanimous ruling from the high court represents a victory for M&G Polymers USA, which first sought to require retiree contributions to health coverage in 2006 after purchasing the plant six years earlier. It also tightens the standard for collective bargaining agreements that do not specify terms for lifetime benefits.

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