How The Housing Slowdown Affects GDP

Look, there is no sugar-coating this, the housing market is really slowing down because of the action the Fed is taking to tame inflation. Interest rates are on the rise, and that has served to tamp down a tremendously overheated housing market that was starting to look eerily similar to the tulip mania craze of the 1600s in Holland, when…

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Air Travel in Disrepair

The extraction and processing of construction aggregates is a complex business that requires extensive expertise at many levels, a reality that is lost on the average consumer watching a load of rock being discharged on a construction site. To accomplish the production of the most basic and critical of all building products requires an infrastructure of personnel that lend their…

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It Isn’t The Office… It’s The Commute

Construction activity follows the trends in construction types. We go through secular, cyclical changes in the types of construction that developers with the money chase. Over the years, there have been booms in hotel construction that dominated many larger markets, or big box retail, or specialty high-end shopping centers, and of course, office buildings of all types. This includes low-rise…

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The Economy Rockets Up – Is a Slowdown Coming?

The answer to the headline above is … maybe. It’s like a rocket booster that fires off its launching pad and zooms up into space, but then starts to fall rapidly back to earth. I know, I know – Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos have figured out how to land them back on earth safely, but for more than 60…

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The Housing Affordability Challenge

Last month, I wrote about a recent report issued by the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index, also known as the “HOI,” which showed that just 54.2% of new and existing homes sold between the beginning of October and end of December were affordable to families earning the U.S. median income of $79,900.  This is down from…

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Is The New Home Market Cooling?

I wrote recently about how the housing market continues to show strength, driven in part by buoyant builder sentiment, low inventories and high demand across all price points. That was back in the fall, and while all signs point to strong new home demand through this spring and summer, a new confluence of pressures could force a tamping down of…

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The Return-To-Office Conundrum

I was in New York City during the first week of January, and the streets of Midtown Manhattan remain eerily quiet. But what was most telling was the view from my hotel room. I could enjoy the still-standing Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center, and the dusting of snow that covered the roof of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, a sight to see.…

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The Inflation Threat – More Concerning Than We Expected

I have written extensively in the past in this and our sister publication Concrete Products about how the Fed has balanced the economy over the past many years, maintaining low interest rates against the backdrop of strong employment numbers, which is a real parlor trick at a minimum. And more recently, I corrected myself and said our firm’s view of…

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