US chem shares fall despite oil amid Q1 earnings

Al Greenwood


HOUSTON (ICIS)–US-listed shares of many chemical producers fell on Thursday despite a rise in oil prices following a busy day for earnings.

Shares of Dow, Olin and Sherwin-Williams fell after releasing their Q1 earnings results. Olin fell the most among the US-listed shares which ICIS follows.

In response to low demand, Dow plans to idle two polyethylene (PE) plants in the US, one PE plant in Argentina and two elastomer plants in the US. The shutdown should last for at least 30 days.

Meanwhile, shares of Ingevity and Kraton rose sharply after each released their earnings.

The table below shows the US-listed companies followed by ICIS.

$ Current
$ Change % Change
AdvanSix 12.18 -0.14 -1.14
Axalta Coating Systems 19.74 -0.06 -0.30
Braskem 7.85 -0.44 -5.31
Celanese 83.07 -3.27 -3.79
Dow 36.69 -0.78 -2.08
DuPont 47.02 -1.15 -2.39
Eastman 60.51 -2.96 -4.66
HB Fuller 36.79 -1.36 -3.56
Huntsman 16.81 -0.66 -3.78
Ingevity 51.92 7.00 15.58
Kraton 15.61 2.31 17.37
Kronos Worldwide 9.49 -0.57 -5.67
LyondellBasell 57.95 -1.98 -3.30
Methanex 15.88 -0.49 -2.99
NewMarket 411.44 -9.39 -2.23
Olin 13.35 -2.89 -17.80
PolyOne 23.29 -1.09 -4.47
PPG 90.83 -5.05 -5.27
RPM International 66.41 -1.26 -1.86
Sherwin-Williams 536.37 -2.49 -0.46
Stepan 95.40 -3.21 -3.26
Chemours 11.73 -0.73 -5.86
Trinseo 20.45 -1.90 -8.50
Tronox 6.82 -0.58 -7.84
Univar 14.52 -0.39 -2.62
Venator Materials 1.27 -0.19 -13.01
Westlake Chemical 43.45 -3.18 -6.82

The general stock markets also fell, as shown in the table below.

30-Apr Change %
Dow Jones Industrial Average 24,345.72 -288.14 -1.17
S&P 500 2,912.43 -27.08 -0.92
Dow Jones US Chemicals Index 535.29 -15.33 -2.78
S&P 500 Chemicals Industry Index 539.40 -14.06 -2.54

The indices fell after the US Department of Labor reported that jobless claims reached 3.84m for the week ending on 25 April.

In oil markets, futures rose as a new supply-cut agreement is scheduled to take effect on 1 May among OPEC and its allies.

Thursday Wednesday %
Brent 25.27 22.54 12.1
WTI 18.84 15.06 25.1

In chemical markets, the US May benzene contract price fell by more than 20%.

US May butadiene (BD) contracts fell as demand remained low from tyre producers.

Dow is seeking April price decreases for PE.

In Europe, GDP in the eurozone had fallen in the first quarter by 3.8%, the largest fall since the series began; while in the wider 27-country EU GDP fell by 3.5%.

BASF also reported on Thursday its Q1 results issuing a very sombre guidance for Q2.

ClariantWacker Chemie, and major Shell released gloomy statements about the upcoming months.

Within the olefins chain, May contracts for propylene and ethylene posted large falls.

In Asia, chemical shares rose with oil prices.

Japan’s industrial output fell to its lowest since January 2013 in March 2020 on coronavirus-related disruptions at factories and poor overseas demand.

China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) dipped to 50.8 in April from 52.0 in March, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said.

The April PMI reading is above the 50.0 mark which indicates expansion in the manufacturing economy.

Focus article by Al Greenwood

Additional reporting by Morgan Condon and Nurluqman Suratman

Visit the ICIS coronavirus topic page for analysis of the impact on chemical markets and links to latest news.


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