Market Background

Cheaper Raw Materials Help Tire Manufacturers Increase Profit (Part 1)

In the first three quarters of 2015 (January–September), consolidated financial results for four Japanese tire manufacturers—Bridgestone Corp., Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd., Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd., and Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd.—showed large gains in operating income thanks to low prices for crude oil, natural rubber and synthetic rubber. The lower raw material prices translated into gains for Bridgestone of...

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Retread Tires Expected to Reach 30% of Market

The logistics industry, the main source of demand for truck and bus radial tires (TBRs), now faces a range of challenges to reduce costs and environmental impact. Among others these include rising fuel prices and the need to procure new vehicles to comply with emissions restrictions. One solution recently promoted by tire manufacturers is to offer tire sets that include both new and...

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Old Toyo Rubber Tires Turn Into a Lion

Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd. set up a “Tire+Art” themed booth at the Tokyo Design Week 2015. The booth had on display a sculpture of a lion made using old Toyo tires created by Korean artist Ji Yong Ho, who specializes in tire art. Ji, who created this work on a request from Toyo Tires, said, “The reason I...

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Conveyor Belt Production up to August Has Been Strong

Production volume of rubber belts for conveyors is on the rise. According to statistics by the Japan Belting Manufacturers Association, total production volume between January and August is up 5 percent year-on-year. Domestic demand and exports have remained steady. Since the beginning of the year, with the exception of May and June, all months exceeded the prior year. However, as...

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JRW Surveys Outlook for Eastern Japan’s Rubber Industry

Japan Rubber Weekly (JRW) recently conducted a questionnaire survey of manufacturers and dealers on the industry’s current state and outlook. The survey focused on Japan’s Kanto and Koshin’etsu regions. Sixty-three companies responded. When asked about the current status, 71.4 percent of respondents answered “normal,” 3.1 percent said “strong,” and 25.4 percent said “sluggish.” The reasons offered for the “strong” answers...

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JAMA: August Decline in Motor Vehicle Production

According to figures collected by the Japan Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (JAMA), the number of motor vehicles (4-wheeler) produced in August 2015 was 605,000, an approximate 5 percent drop over the same month of the previous year. It was also the 14th consecutive month that the figure had fallen compared to the same month of the previous year. In terms of...

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