Toys to Trinkets Help Chemicals Float Over Asia Fuel Glut: Chart

As profits from turning crude into fuels in Asia slump amid a supply glut and weaker demand, producers of petrochemicals are managing to reap gains. That’s because, unlike gasoline or diesel, prices of chemicals -- building blocks for most everyday consumer goods -- don’t typically drop with oil. “Demand for consumer products remains robust at a time when raw material prices have collapsed,” said Ong Han Wee, a Singapore-based analyst with industry consultant FGE. “Lifestyle choices have not changed too much. People are still buying everyday items, much like they did before the oil price crash.”