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...in today's edition, 11/01/2004. Back page of Section A.

One has to do with the coal industry. Opportunities vs. risks. Players in the field. Apparently, the US has huge amounts of the stuff, and we use it for fuel, but also for chemical manufacturing, much like we do with oil.

The other has to do with alternative resources, and how the cost of wind fuel has gone down because of US Government tax incentives. GE is getting more orders for wind turbines. Army about to use solar panels for tents, etc.

Find the paper; it's worth the cost even on a bad day.

Have a nice week!
 

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...and in Monday's issue, November 8th (Monday's issue is always printed after the market closes on the prior Friday):

Industry Snapshot on the back of section A has two articles about the chemical industry.

Did you know that about 7% of all energy consumed in the US goes to chemical companies? They are heavy users of petroleum in Europe and natural gas in the US. The fuel is used both as "fuel" and also as a source of "raw material", from which products such as plastics used in styrofoam, polyester, and plastic bottles, trash bags, and other plastic "wraps", as well as chemicals that eventually get turned into detergents and cleaners.

Their main competition is chemical companies located closer to Middle Eastern oil reserves. And it's all about cost redution and efficiency improvements. The price of oil is the number one factor in this, and the price of natural gas is an especially worrisome problem.

The second article is an interview with the chief economist at the American Chemical institute, wich is not a company...it's an industry trade group.

Are you aware that the average car has about $2,000 worth of chemical products in it? Chemical companies make all of the plastics, as well as the oil, power steering, and transmission fluids.

The average house has about $12,000 worth of chemicals in it. Carpet, siding, pipes, paint. The copper used in the pipes or wiring had to go through chemical processes just to be separated from the ore. The computer you are reading now wouldn't be possible without chemistry..without the chemical industry.

The articles are much more detailed than my little "executive summary" above. Anyhow, just so you know.
 
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