First Look July 2021



Bipartisan Bill
President Biden and a bipartisan group of senators have announced a deal on infrastructure spending. According to the White House, the price tag comes in at $1.2 trillion over eight years, with $579 billion in new spending. Other sources peg the legislation as a $973- or $953-billion package.

Vulcan Materials Acquisition
Vulcan Materials Co. and U.S. Concrete Inc. have entered into a definitive merger agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, Vulcan will acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of U.S. Concrete common stock for a purchase price of $74.00 per share in cash, which represents a total equity value of $1.294 billion.

Martin Marietta Acquisition
Martin Marietta Materials Inc. has entered into a definitive agreement under which the company will acquire Lehigh Hanson Inc.’s West Region business from HeidelbergCement for $2.3 billion in cash.


The estimated U.S. output of construction aggregates produced and shipped for consumption in the first quarter of 2021 was 464 million metric tons, a slight increase compared with that of the same period of 2020, according to Jason Willett, U.S. Geological Survey aggregates commodity specialist.


  • Total construction starts dropped 1% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $902.8 billion, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. The brunt of the decline was borne by residential starts, while nonresidential and nonbuilding starts continued their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.  
  • The U.S. Census Bureau announced that total construction spending during April 2021 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,524.2 billion, 0.2% (±0.8%) above the revised March estimate of $1,521.0 billion.
  • Overall housing starts increased 3.6% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.57 million units off of a downwardly revised April reading, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau.


The Mine Safety and Health Administration reported that on May 18, a telehandler at the Young Mine, Jefferson County, Tenn., was towing a trailer with a diesel pump onboard up an inclined underground roadway when the tow hitch suddenly broke. The trailer rolled down the roadway, striking and fatally injuring a contract laborer.


  • WTI CRUDE OIL FUTURES 6/21/2021: $73.66/barrel, up $2.78 from week earlier; up $33.91 from year earlier.
  • NATURAL GAS FUTURES 6/21/2021: $3.191/MMBtu, down $0.161 from week earlier; up $1.522 from year earlier.
  • RETAIL DIESEL 6/21/2021: $3.287/gal., up $0.001 from week earlier; up $0.862 from year earlier.
  • ELECTRICITY 3/20/2021: Average price to industrial customers 7.04 cents/kilowatt hour; down from 8.47 cents/kilowatt hour a year earlier.

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration

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