First Look – August 2022


Holcim Acquires Mathers Group
Holcim has acquired the quarry and asphalt businesses of Mathers Group Inc. in Quebec, Canada, including Carrière St-Eustache Ltée and Pavage St-Eustache Ltée. The acquisition will expand the Holcim Group’s footprint in the dynamic Quebec market, where infrastructure investment is projected to drive high growth across the Eastern Canada region. 

GCAA Midyear Meeting a Success
The Georgia Construction Aggregate Association (GCAA) Annual Midyear Meeting was a great success, according to Executive Director Jeff Wansley. The meeting was held on June 23-26 at the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. More than 220 attended the event, including producer and associate members and their families. 

NSSGA’s Hubacz Talks Inflation
The National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) Board Chair and President of Bond Construction Corp. Karen Hubacz spoke to the House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee about the impact of inflation on the aggregates industry.

An estimated 291 million metric tons of crushed stone was produced and shipped for consumption in the United States in the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 3.5% compared with that of the same period of 2021, according to Jason Willett, commodity specialist for the U.S. Geological Survey. The estimated production-for-consumption of crushed stone in the first quarter of 2022 increased in five of the nine geographic divisions compared with that sold or used in the first quarter of 2021. Production-for-consumption increased in 29 of the 45 states for which estimates were made. 

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) reported that on June 20, a contract driller was working outside of his drill at 3M Little Rock Industrial Mineral Products, Pulaski County, Ark., when he fell from the top of a highwall and died. MSHA also reported that on June 20, a 50-year-old miner at a Lhoist Group plant in Virginia died when the excavator he was operating underground slid over an elevated loading pad and was engulfed by lime dust. 

The U.S. Census Bureau announced that construction spending during May 2022 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,779.8 billion, 0.1% (±0.8%) below the revised April estimate of $1,782.5 billion. The May figure is 9.7% (±1.3%) above the May 2021 estimate of $1,621.9 billion. 

New home sales in June fell to the lowest level since April 2020, reflecting declining builder sentiment as construction bottlenecks continue to slow new home building and raise housing costs. Sales of newly built, single-family homes in June fell 8.1% to a 590,000 seasonally adjusted annual rate from a sharply downwardly revised reading in May, according to newly released data by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau. New home sales are down 13.4% in 2022 on a year-to-date basis.

Total construction starts fell 5% in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $932.3 billion, according to Dodge Construction Network. Nonresidential building starts lost 14% during the month and residential was 6% lower. On the contrary, nonbuilding starts gained 13% in June due to the start of several large solar projects.

7/25/2022: $96.70/barrel; down $5.90 from week earlier; up $24.63 from year earlier.

7/25/2022: $8.727/MMBtu, up $1.248 from week earlier; up $4.667 from year earlier.

7/25/2022: $5.268/gal., down $0.164 from week earlier; up $1.926 from year earlier.

4/20/2022: Average price to industrial customers 7.83 cents/kilowatt hour; up from 6.76 cents/kilowatt hour a year earlier.

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration

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