First Look – June 2014

Nichol Joins Rock Products
Mining Media International is pleased to announce that Kyle Nichol has joined the staff of Rock Products and C&D World magazines as a regional sales manager.

Vulcan’s First Quarter
Vulcan Materials Co. announced results for the first quarter ending March 31, 2014. The company is reporting that net sales increased $44 million, or 9 percent.

Lafarge Wins Competition
Lafarge North America’s Mine Rescue Team took first place at the Wilmington, Ill., Regional Mine Rescue Competition.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration announced that federal inspectors issued 147 citations and 15 orders during special impact inspections conducted at 12 coal mines and four metal and nonmetal mines in April.

The estimated U.S. output of construction aggregates produced and shipped for consumption in the first quarter of 2014 was 370 metric tons (Mt,) an increase of 7 percent compared with that of the same period of 2013, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. “The revised estimated annual output produced for consumption in 2013 was 2.03 billion metric tons (Gt,) still a slight increase compared with the reported annual output for 2012,” said Construction Aggregates Commodity Specialist Jason Willett.

New construction starts in April rose 3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $533.7 billion, according to McGraw Hill Construction, a division of McGraw Hill Financial. The increase maintained the upward movement established in March, which followed sluggish activity at the outset of 2014.

Sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 6.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 433,000 units in April, according to newly released data from HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau. The gain builds on an upward revision of sales numbers reported for the previous month.

The U.S. Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce announced that construction spending during April 2014 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $953.5 billion, 0.2 percent (±1.5 percent) above the revised March estimate of $951.6 billion. The April figure is 8.6 percent (±2.0 percent) above the April 2013 estimate of $878.4 billion.


  • WTI crude oil futures price – 5/30/2014: $102.71/bbl, down $1.64 from week earlier; up $9.10 from year earlier.
  • Natural gas futures price – 5/30/2014: $4.542/mmBtu, up $0.137 from week earlier; up $0.519 from year earlier.
  • Weekly coal production – 5/24/2014: 18.648 million tons, up 0.063 million tons from week earlier; down 0.020 million tons from year earlier.
  • Natural gas inventories – 5/23/2014: 1,380 Bcf, up 114 Bcf from week earlier; down 748 Bcf from year earlier.
  • Crude oil inventories – 5/23/2014: 393.0 mmbbl, up 1.7 mmbbl from week earlier; down 4.6 mmbbl from year earlier.

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