LONDON (ICIS)--Confidence in the European downstream chemicals sector strengthened in September, but expectations for profitability were more bearish, analysis of the September ICIS Chemical Market Confidence Index (CMCI) showed on Wednesday.
Assessments in the market of current and future business conditions and order book volumes were stronger month on month, but current profitability was slightly worse than the same period a year ago with little improvement expected over the next 12 months.
The September index (see below) showed an improved outlook across several metrics compared to the previous month, but expectations for future business conditions and current order book volumes were weaker than they had been in July.
The overall September CMCI hinted at stabilising conditions for the European chemicals sector as a whole after several volatile months, but improvements for business condition expectations and current profitability remained modest.
The newly established ICIS Europe CMCI aggregates sentiment from hundreds of petrochemical market players actively involved in price negotiations across more than 60 different markets.
The Europe CMCI runs from +100, to -100, with zero on each index representing neutral, or uncertain conditions, a negative score indicating bearish expectations and a positive score representing bullish expectations. The indices also gather sentiment on the comparison between the current situation and the situation across the past 12 months to give a complete picture of current market conditions and confidence. The information is gathered in the third week of each month. A full methodology is available on request.
For more details on the overall Europe CMCI data, click here