The good news: The fortunes of chemical stocks are improving. The value of U.S. chemical sales is expected to top $1tr in 2018, up from $789bn last year, according to the American Chemistry Council.
The bad news: Sluggish economies in Europe and a slowdown in China have weighed on the global chemicals market.
That said, the outlook for chemical stocks is improving — worldwide chemical production will rise 3.8 percent this year and 4.1 percent in 2015. Another good sign: chemical companies are investing heavily in research and development — the ACC estimates that R&D investment will hit $68.7bn in 2018 – up from $56.6bn in 2012.
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