October Credit Managers’ Index Rebounds

The Credit Managers' Index (CMI) from NACM rebounded in October as credit managers reported better conditions in several factors across the board. However, the overall, combined improvement is not without its caveats. The combined CMI score improved half a point to 54.6. "Like much of the recent economic data, there are signs of concern showing up ...
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Federal Reserve Cuts Interest Rates for Third Time in 2019

The Federal Reserve cut interest rates Oct. 30, according to Reuters. This decision marks the third cut of 2019 as the cut is meant to offset the fallout from the global trade war. The policy rate will drop by a quarter of a percentage point, reaching a target range of 1.5% and 1.75%.Moving forward, the Fed said it will "monitor the implicatio...
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Contractors Confident Thanks to Profit Margins, Staffing Levels

Expectations for profit margins and staffing kept contractors confident in August when results exceeded July predictions. According to Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), the Construction Confidence Index (CCI) shows an increase in both factors, while sales expectations declined.More than half of the surveyed contractors anticipate an increa...
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New Home Sales Slip Slightly

New home sales were down slightly in September from the revised August rate. According to the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development, new single-family home sales declined 0.7% in September, yet the seasonally adjusted annual rate of 701,000 is 15.5% higher than a year ago. The modest setback still did not stop it from being ...
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Owners, Contractors Need Data Connection

As one of the industries slowly adopting technology, the construction sector is learning what does and does not work, the former being project management solutions. For contractors, many factors must be considered when selecting this software, specifically, coordination between contractors and project owners. In September, Dodge Data & Analytic...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for October 22, 2019

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy—Massive Increase in School Funding— The current plan from Senator Elizabeth Warren would allocate $800 billion to public education—$450 billion to Title One funding for low income students, $200 billion for students with disabilities, another $100 billion for various grants ...
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Brexit Vote Delayed—Yes, Again

A Brexit decision has been delayed yet again, further stalling the inevitable futures of the global supply chain. In a Saturday vote, the U.K. parliament voted 322-306 to delay Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Brexit deal, according to Supply Chain Dive. Parliament has now asked the EU for an extension until Jan. 31, 2020, but no decision has yet bee...
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Housing Starts Tumble in September

U.S. housing starts are heading down a treacherous road as are housing completions and building permits. The latest data from the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development shows housing starts in September were down 9.4%. However, the seasonally adjusted annual rate is 1.6% above the September 2018 rate. Homebuilding was at a mo...
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September Construction Input Prices Fall

Contractors wrapped up September with reports of falling construction input prices. According to Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), input prices dropped more than half of a percent last month, decreasing nearly three times as much year-over-year (YOY).ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu said in the report "a weakening global economy, sturdy U....
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October Tariffs on Chinese Goods Cancelled

Trade talks between China and the U.S. continued, leading to the U.S. calling off the Oct. 15 tariff increases, according to the Associated Press. The tariffs would have increased from 25% to 30% on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports. The cancellation came with compromise and negotiation.In exchange for the tariff cancellation, China has ag...
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Dodge Momentum Index Takes Step Forward

The Dodge Momentum Index took a step forward in September mostly due to the commercial aspect. The Index, published by Dodge Data & Analytics, measures the initial report of nonresidential building during the planning stage, which can lead to spending by a full year. The commercial component improved nearly 9% in September to push the overall i...
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US China Trade Negotiations Continue, US Tariffs Called Into Question

The U.S. and China continue to negotiate amid the trade wars. According to a recent article in Bloomberg, China remains open to reaching a compromise and partial trade deal with the U.S. The main cause for concern stems from weakening any potential damage a trade war will cause on the health of the global economy.Negotiators will meet in Washington...
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Construction Sees ‘Another Perfect Employment Data Release’

As unemployment continues to decline, the construction sector is among the industries to see job growth in September in what Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Chief Economist Anirban Basu described as "another perfect employment data release." According to an ABC report on Oct. 4, net new construction jobs increased by 7,000 last month with...
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US Construction Spending Increases Slightly

U.S. construction spending is on the rise; however, it is public construction spending leading the way. According to the Census Bureau, total spending increased 0.1% in August, but the data is 1.9% behind the figure from August 2018. The latest announcement from earlier this week states construction spending during the first eight months of 2019 is...
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Federal and Central Bank Currency May be on the Way

With the advent of FedNow, the U.S. Federal Reserve tossed around the idea of issuing a digital currency Oct. 2, according to a recent article in Reuters. Philadelphia Federal Reserve bank president Patrick Harker said during a community banking conference the implementation of a digital currency "is inevitable," but he does not want the U.S. to be...
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Job Growth, Low Interest Rates Behind Improved Home Sales

The combination of job growth and low interest rates made for a successful month of new home sales in August, increasing nearly 6.5% over the 2018 results. On Sept. 25, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported more than a 7% increase in new single-family homes last month, up from economists' predictions in July.According to NAHB, a...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for September 27, 2019

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM EconomistShort Items of Interest—U.S. EconomyHave Trump's Attacks on Fed Worked? The relationship between the Fed and Trump has been odd from the very beginning. Upon taking office, Trump had the opportunity to pack the Fed as there was only one holdover from the Yellen Fed—Lael Brainard. Trump's choices were quite mains...
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Credit Managers' Index Disappoints in September

NACM's Credit Managers' Index (CMI) faltered a bit in September after a robust showing the previous month. "That gain was short-lived as this month there was a bit of a decline. The data is still pretty firmly in the expansion zone, but not as robustly as was the case earlier," said NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, Ph.D. The combined CMI slipped from 55...
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August Housing Starts Soar Thanks to Multifamily Gains

August housing starts saw the largest gain in 12 years, exceeding experts' predictions in July with a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.36 million units. Rising more than 12%, the surge in housing starts was attributed to a signification increase in the multifamily housing sector, where the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) said start...
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Australia Late Payments Improve

Late payments are improving across Australia, albeit at a minuscule pace. According to illion's Trade Late Payments Report for the June 2019 quarter released earlier this week, late payments improved from 11 days to 10 days year-over-year, "reflecting improved trading conditions and pressure from the government to cut payment times," states a relea...
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Olaoye Tunde Olawale
Olawale
Friday, 20 September 2019 17:49
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