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RMA committee predicts 1.2% decrease in tread rubber shipments

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According to the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), continued economic growth sustained strong demand for tread rubber shipments in 2006.

However, the inability to source off-road tire casings as well as the pull-forward effect of new truck purchases into 2006 -- a result of 2007 engine emissions standards -- will adversely affect total shipments for the year.

The RMA's Tread Rubber Market Analysis Committee predicts tread rubber shipments will fall by 1.2% this year. However, growth will resume in 2007; the committee forecasts shipments will increase by approximately 1.3%.

The 2006 forecast will mark the first comparative decrease in four years. Retreaded tire shipments will total approximately 15.7 million tires retreaded in 2006 in the United States.

More information on tread rubber shipments will be incorporated into the 2007 RMA Tire Industry Factbook. For more information or to order the fact book, please visit www.rma.org.

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