Housing Demand Has Jumped

The popular business press, including the cable news channels, are awash in reports that housing demand has already jumped on just the notion of rate cuts later this year, and the jump is expected to become a surge as I have been predicting. Remember, I have said for the last several months that when the Fed signaled inflation was headed…

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The Tide Has Turned

The Fed has said it: interest rates are coming down. Fed Chairman Jay Powell surprised markets in early December when he announced, somewhat unexpectedly, that the Fed was not planning to raise rates any further, and, in fact, was projecting three rate cuts in 2024 now that inflation has cooled.  Surprisingly, the Fed’s quarterly economic projections released in December, the…

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Upending Another Giant Industry

There are tectonic plate shifts in our economy that have existed since the early ages of commerce, events so dramatic, they shake entire industries. An example would be how the advent of the Internet decimated the travel agency world.  A couple of decades ago, trying to book airline tickets and hotel rooms was a laborious, over-the-phone nightmare that travel agents…

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The Burgeoning Field of Private Credit

New financing instruments have been invented since the time of the Phoenicians and the Médicis. The modern corporation was developed by English and Dutch trading companies in the 1600s, and some believe the genesis goes back as far as the 1300s in France. With that modern concept of multiple owners of a single entity, it drove the early advent of…

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Who Is Snapping Up All The Houses?

We are never-ending in our firm’s quest for up-to-the-minute data that we can analyze and then draw conclusions on how that data drives the construction aggregate market, and every now and then, we get tossed a big surprise that we did not expect. Take a recent, seminal report from a major investment bank that conducted a deep dive into the…

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The Pulse (Fourth Quarter 2023 Edition)

By Allen-Villere PartnersThe Pulse and the AVP Pulse Index, are joint projects between mergers-and-acquisition advisors Allen-Villere Partners, and Rock Products. The Pulse appears quarterly in Rock Products, and the AVP Pulse Index appears monthly. The Federal Reserve has raised its benchmark rate 11 times to cool inflation, with the latest rate increase of 25- basis-points in July. This puts the federal funds target…

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The Outlook for Interest Rates

As I have loudly predicted for many months now and wrote in this space again last month: There is no recession in the near term, and none in sight. While that is welcome news to all in our industry, whether it be the large multi-nationals with their all-important shareholder interests to consider, or the privately held independent producer who has…

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A Recession Isn’t Going to Happen

I speak at various industry conferences, sometimes as often as 10 times a year, and I also write this regular monthly column along with one for our sister publication, as well as occasional other articles. This gives me a great pulpit to occasionally espouse our firm’s go-against-the grain view of the general economy, and our industry in particular, especially when…

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The Promise of Artificial Intelligence

It was sometime in the late 1970s, but I remember the conversation, even the restaurant, very well. I was in my late 20s, and one of my friends who had migrated to New York after college and found a solid footing in Wall Street investment banking was back in his hometown of New Orleans, where several of our old friends…

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The Pulse (Third Quarter 2023 Edition)

By Allen-Villere Partners The Pulse and the AVP Pulse Index, are joint projects between mergers-and-acquisition advisors Allen-Villere Partners, and Rock Products. The Pulse appears quarterly in Rock Products, and the AVP Pulse Index appears monthly Almost all the publicly traded companies in the Construction Materials space are trading at or near their 52-week high, indicating an overwhelmingly positive outlook among investors for…

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