Somewhere amidst profit-challenged chemical companies like DuPont (NYSE:DD) and RPM International (NYSE:RPM) and high-performing (but highly specialized) small companies like Sherwin-Williams (NYSE:SHW), there's a happy medium. That happy medium might be Rohm & Haas (NYSE:ROH).

Unfortunately, "happy medium" doesn't necessarily mean great growth. Sure, sales were up 8% this quarter for this well-diversified specialty chemicals concern, but volume/mix was only up about 3%. What's more, profitability got squeezed somewhat, and earnings from continuing operations were up just 3%.

If you follow the likes of DuPont, PPG (NYSE:PPG), and so on, you've heard this basic story before. Demand for coatings and performance chemicals is just fine, and price hikes have gone through pretty consistently. Unfortunately, raw material and energy prices are a whole lot higher, which is stripping away most of the benefits of top-line growth.

Now, that's not to say that 2006 will be dismal, because I don't think it will be. Among other things, the company is planning on higher pricing to combat raw material costs. What's more, whether you're looking at Linear Technology (NASDAQ:LLTC) or Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE:AMD), there are definite signs of life in the semiconductor industry -- good news for the company's electronics materials business.

Unfortunately, that chip/circuit board/LCD-sensitive business is only a slice of a larger overall pie. The company itself is only shooting for low-single-digit revenue growth for next year, and even modestly generous cash flow growth assumptions don't get you to a target price too much beyond today's trading price. Although this company has a respectable track record with cash flow and pays a fair dividend, there are plenty of other fish in the sea at this point.

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Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).