Monthly Archives: November 2012
Posted on November 29, 2012 by FMI CorporationReading the Tea Leaves By Cynthia Paul Every day we are bombarded by news and information. We assailed by thousands of new data points to consider or filter out. The newspaper (a dwindling resource), radio, TV, emails, blogs, Tweets, etc. all combine to provide data overload. It is easy to overlook the trends that are buried in the details. The key is to cull the pertinent information and let the rest float by. What is pertinent? That depends on your point of view. Let’s say that you are the CEO of a mid-sized construction firm. More than most people, you are extremely interested in how actions and reactions in the world around you might affect the profitability, growth, hiring needs, project opportunities, capital spending or even the survival of your firm. What is happening in your local market is important. It provides context for clients’ thinking regarding projects. It informs their decision-making. But what drives their business are industry trends, competitive best practices, changing customer preferences and demands — all balanced with what their shareholders/stakeholders demand.
Posted on November 9, 2012 by FMI CorporationFMI’s Third Quarter Construction Outlook, 2012 By Randy Giggard Now that the elections are over, it is time for America to get back to work. However, contrary to election-year rhetoric, the economy is inching its way to improvement and the construction industry has not stopped working, even if it is more difficult to find that next project and remain profitable. FMI’s forecast is calling for an 8% increase in total construction put in place for 2013, thanks, in large part, to more robust growth in residential construction and a few strong markets in nonresidential and nonbuilding construction. This is the largest percentage increase since 2005 but only returning to 2003 levels of construction in current dollars. More positively, we expect that rate of increase to grow to 9% in 2014 and continue at 8% 2016. That growth is largely based on a significant, double-digit rebound in residential construction, but we expect other sectors like office and commercial construction finally to pull out of the doldrums as well. Even though we expect a growth rate for residential construction to reach 14% in 2013 and 15% in 2014, total residential construction won’t return to 2002/2003 levels until 2016. While slow, these may be more sustainable levels, avoiding high run-ups in costs and significant drops in affordability.
Posted on November 1, 2012 by FMI CorporationThe Consilience of Design and Construction By Steven Isaacs The apparent trend in business toward increasing consolidation in the design and construction industry may be part of a broader natural trend or cycle found in science and technology and elsewhere in the economy. Evidence of such trends, notably in the field of science and technology, is bound to play an important role in any movement toward convergence in the A/E/C industry.