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Construction Economics

Welcome to ABC's resource for construction-related economic data and trend analysis. In addition, you will also find relevant articles, presentations and archived copies of ABC's Construction Economics Updates.

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Nonresidential Fixed Investment Falls in Second Quarter

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Nonresidential fixed investment fell by 0.6 percent during the second quarter after expanding by 1.6 percent during the first quarter, according to the July 30 real gross domestic product (GDP) report by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). For the economy as a whole, real GDP expanded by 2.3 percent (seasonally adjusted annual rate) during the second quarter following a 0.6 percent increase during the year’s first quarter. Note that the first quarter estimate for nonresidential fixed investment was revised upward from -3.4 percent annualized growth.

Construction Materials Prices, Dominated by Crisis Economics, Expand Slightly in June

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Prices for inputs to construction industries expanded 0.2 percent in June after increasing 1.1 percent in May. Year-over-year prices were down 2.2 percent in June and prices have not increased on an annual basis for the past seven months. The last time this occurred was the third and fourth quarter of 2009 when the global economy was still reeling from the financial crisis; however, June’s year-over-year decline in construction input prices was the smallest of 2015. Prices of inputs to nonresidential construction industries rose 0.3 percent on a monthly basis, but are down 3.6 percent on a yearly basis.

Nonresidential Construction Employment Remains Essentially Unchanged in June

Thursday, July 02, 2015

U.S. construction industry employment was effectively unchanged in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics preliminary estimate released July 2, 2015. May’s estimate was revised downward from 17,000 to 15,000 net new jobs. Nonresidential construction lost 1,100 jobs in June, with nonresidential specialty trade contractors losing 5,600 jobs and the nonresidential building segment gaining 4,500 jobs. Residential construction shed 2,400 jobs for the months. The heavy and civil engineering segment added 3,800 net new jobs in June. 


Nonresidential Construction Spending Continues Growth With Stellar May

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Through the first five months of 2015, nonresidential construction spending is having its second best year since the Census Bureau began tracking the metric in 2002. According to the July 1 release, nonresidential construction spending increased 1.1 percent on a month-over-month basis and 8.1 percent on a year-over-year basis, and totals $669.6 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis. From January to May, nonresidential spending expanded by 7.1 percent; the only year in which the segment saw faster growth was 2007. Since then, growth over each year’s initial five months has averaged only 1.8 percent. 


Weather, Additional Issues Lead to 3.2 Percent Decline in Construction Backlog Indicator

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Associated Builders and Contractors’ (ABC) Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) declined 3.2 percent during the first quarter of 2015. Construction firms report a revenue-weighted average CBI of 8.4 months, 0.3 months below the fourth quarter of 2014 reading. Year over year, CBI has increased 4 percent from the first quarter of 2014 backlog of 8.1 months.

Year-End Construction Backlog Drops 1 Percent

Monday, February 23, 2015

According to Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), the Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) for the fourth quarter of 2014 declined 0.1 months, or 1 percent.  Despite the quarter-over-quarter decline, backlog ended the year at 8.7 months, which is still 4.4 percent higher than one year ago.  


Construction Backlog Indicator Reaches Another All-Time High

Monday, November 17, 2014

Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) reached a new all-time high during the third quarter of 2014 at 8.8 months, eclipsing the previous all-time high of 8.5 months in the second quarter of 2014. The 2014 third quarter backlog is 6.9 percent higher than the third quarter of 2013 and the continued growth of backlog during the last six months likely indicates that 2015 will be a strong year of recovery for the nation’s nonresidential construction industry.


Construction Backlog Indicator Reaches All-Time High in Second Quarter

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) reached an all-time high in the second quarter of 2014. CBI improved 5.4 percent following a 2.8 percent decline in the first quarter and currently stands at 8.5; up 3.6 percent on a year-over-year basis.


Construction Owner Confidence Rises During First Half of ‘14

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Washington, D.C. - The Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Construction Confidence Index (CCI) increased across all three indices in the first half of 2014. The CCI reflects construction industry prospects using three measured categories – revenues, profit margins and hiring. Each index now stands at a post-recession high implying that nonresidential construction’s recovery, already robust, is positioned to continue into the year ahead.

Level of Confidence Rises Among Contractors

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Gains in the Associated Builders and Contractors’ (ABC) Construction Confidence Index (CCI) indicate that contractor confidence expanded as 2013 wound to a close, particularly with respect to near-term industry profit margins and staffing levels.  The CCI measures construction prospects along three dimensions – revenues, profit margins and hiring.  All three indices remained above the threshold value of 50, which indicates growth, and each is up on a year-over-year basis.


Despite Headwinds, Contractor Confidence Rises In First Half Of 2013

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Associated Builders and Contractors’ Construction Confidence Index (CCI) shows confidence among nonresidential contractors increased slightly during the first half of 2013, despite sequestration and rising interest rates.  


Construction Confidence Dips In Second Half Of 2012

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) today released its Construction Confidence Index (CCI) for the second half of 2012. The CCI reflects three aspects of the U.S. nonresidential construction industry: sales prospects, staffing levels and profit margins.