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ABC issues news releases on the latest workforce, policy and industry issues, as well as construction-related economic data and trends. Commercial and industrial construction economic analyses include federal data on construction spending, employment, GDP and the Producer Price Index, as well as state-by-state construction unemployment estimates.

In addition, ABC produces the Construction Backlog Indicator, the only economic indicator that reflects the amount of work that will be performed by commercial and industrial construction contractors in the months ahead, and the Construction Confidence Index, a diffusion index that signals construction contractors’ expectations for sales, profit margins and staffing levels. ABC construction economic releases are published according to this schedule 



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From the category archives: Construction Economics

Construction Economics

Economic Growth Stronger than Headline GDP Figure Suggests

Thursday, October 29, 2015 12:25 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C.—In a sign of continued recovery for the  U.S. economy, both real gross domestic product (GDP) and nonresidential fixed investment expanded during the third quarter, according to an analysis by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of today’s  release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. GDP expanded 1.5 percent (seasonally adjusted annual rate) during the third quarter while nonresidential fixed investment expanded by 2.1 percent during that period, both
building on positive results from the previous quarter. Read the rest of entry »

Confidence Rises During the First Half of the Year

Thursday, October 15, 2015 10:04 AM
WASHINGTON, D.C. –Associated Builders and Contractors’ (ABC) Construction Confidence Index (CCI) survey indicates that contractor confidence will continue to edge higher in the first half of 2015. The diffusion index measures forward-looking construction industry expectations in sales, profit margins and staffing levels with readings above 50 indicating growth. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Plunge in September

Wednesday, October 14, 2015 11:11 AM
Prices for inputs to construction industries plunged 1.6 percent in September after shedding 0.9 percent in August, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Year-over-year prices were down 5.3 percent for the month, the largest yearly decrease since October of 2009. Inputs to nonresidential construction prices also declined, losing 1.6 percent for the month and 6 percent for the year. Only three of the 11 key input prices expanded on a monthly basis in September, while six experienced double-digit year-over-year declines, according to analysis by Associated Builders and Contractors. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Employment Rises Despite Lackluster National Jobs Report

Friday, October 2, 2015 11:11 AM
U.S. construction industry employment edged higher in September despite a disappointing jobs report for the overall U.S. economy. The number of construction jobs expanded by 8,000 on a net basis in September, with nonresidential builders and specialty trade contractors collectively creating 6,800 of those net new jobs. The number of jobs in the heavy and civil engineering category declined by 2,200, however. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Construction Spending Expands for Seventh Consecutive Month

Thursday, October 1, 2015 11:55 AM
August marked the seventh consecutive month nonresidential construction spending expanded according to an Oct. 1 release supplied by the U.S. Census Bureau. Nonresidential spending totaled $696.3 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis in August, a 0.3 percent increase from the previous month and a 12.3 percent increase from the same time last year. The Census Bureau downwardly revised July’s estimate from $696.1 billion to $694.1 billion. Read the rest of entry »

August Construction Unemployment Rates Improve in 45 States from 2014

Wednesday, September 30, 2015 9:00 AM
Nationally, the construction employment picture has continued to improve from last year. The not seasonally adjusted (NSA) construction unemployment rates for the country and 45 states were down in August on a year-over-year basis. For the first eight months of the year, construction added 113,000 seasonally adjusted (SA) jobs. At the same time, NSA jobs increased by 221,000 from August 2014 to August 2015. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Materials Dip for Second Consecutive Month

Friday, September 11, 2015 12:06 PM
Prices for inputs to the construction industry fell 0.9 percent in August after shedding 0.1 percent in July. Inputs to nonresidential construction behaved similarly, losing 0.8 percent for the month and 4.7 percent for the year. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Activity Increases as Backlog Edges Higher

Wednesday, September 9, 2015 9:00 AM
Associated Builders and Contractors’ (ABC) Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) expanded by 1 percent to 8.5 months during the 2nd quarter of 2015. Backlog declined 3 percent during the 1st quarter, which was punctuated by harsh winter weather and the lingering effects of the West Coast ports slowdown. CBI stands roughly where it did a year ago, indicative of an ongoing recovery in the nation’s nonresidential construction industry. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Construction Employment Downtick No Cause for Concern

Friday, September 4, 2015 10:04 AM
Nonresidential construction employment fell by 700 jobs in August after losing 5,600 jobs in July and 800 jobs in June. Despite the recent slide, nonresidential construction employment is still up 38,800 jobs for the year. 
Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Construction Spending Continues to Grow Through Mid-Summer

Tuesday, September 1, 2015 11:42 AM
Nonresidential construction spending expanded 0.5 percent in July and is up 12.7 percent on a year-over-year basis, according to a Sept. 1 release by the U.S. Census Bureau. This represents the strongest year-over-year percentage growth in spending since April 2008. On a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis, nonresidential construction spending totaled $696.1 billion in July, which is the best reading since March 2009. Additionally, June’s estimate was upwardly revised 0.9 percent from $686.9 billion to $692.8 billion.
Read the rest of entry »