As the construction industry stands at the third quarter and looks ahead at 2014, we can say that mostly the view is not too bad from here. The sun shines brightest in the direction of residential construc¬tion, the only sector that we see growing in dou¬ble digits. While nowhere do we see a hot spot for construction growth, we expect most areas to grow slightly ahead of GDP growth. However, as one looks more carefully at our analysis in this report, there are some foggy areas, especially in those markets dependent on infrastructure growth.
Our overall 2013 forecast for U.S. construction put in place has been revised down 3% from 2012 to 6% for 2013. The revised figure for total con¬struction put in place for 2013 is $909.6 billion, but we expect growth to return to 7% in 2014 and hit $977.1 billion. While we expect residential to continue its growth trend—but not at the rate of 2013—growth in all other markets will slow in 2014. Nonetheless, construction is once again outpac¬ing GDP growth and should continue to do so for the forecast period. Growth in lodging construction will moderate in 2013, but still increase by 15%, overall a long way from the boom years prerecession, but everything “looks like up” from where it was a few years ago. Transportation construction will continue to grow faster than overall construction, but may be slowed due to reduced government subsidies.