Home Builder Confidence Surges

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The month of October was a time of contrasting, and therefore conflicting, economic news that can be unsettling at times. The month started with a report from the Institute of Supply Management, indicating its manufacturing index fell to 47.8 in September, the lowest level since June 2009, from 49.1 the prior month. Readings below 50 indicate contraction, while those above…

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No Relief in Sight for the Tough Labor Market

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By: Pierre G Villere The future holds great promise, as technology continues to disrupt traditional norms and methods in the construction industry in general, and in the aggregates industry in particular. The future for driverless haul trucks, robotics that will replace traditional loaders, use of drones for multiple functions at quarries operations, and all manner of improvements in materials crushing…

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Home Shoppers Are Increasingly Active

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By: Pierre G. Villere Last month, I wrote about the lack of impact that Millennials are having on the housing market, one of the reasons that new home starts have not returned to even their annual historical averages dating back to 1961. But the National Association of Home Builders recently published some research that is very telling about the current…

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Millennials Are Still on the Housing Sidelines

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By: Pierre G. Villere After years of expectations that the housing market would come back to at least its average historical levels of annual starts, The Wall Street Journal recently conducted research that indicates the U.S. housing market is still waiting for a buying surge from the Millennial generation that entered the workforce during the recession, and some of the…

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Why Sentiment Drives Our Entire Economy

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By Pierre Villere Over the course of the last several months, I have been in discussions with the fine editors at several SEMCO Publishing titles, including this magazine. After a decade and a half of writing about the construction materials industry, I have expanded my editorial pursuits to include this excellent publication, as well as its sister title, Concrete Products.

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