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WEX Releases Monthly Construction Fuel Consumption Index (FCI) Results
U.S. Construction Industry Fueling Increased 2.5% Year-Over-Year in June, Down 0.5% versus Previous Month
The WEX Construction FCI measures national fuel consumption statistics
for the construction industry, which provides an accurate and up-to-date
indication of construction activity in
WEX worked with IHS to capture and analyze transaction data from its closed loop network, which includes over 90 percent of the domestic retail fuel locations. With this data, the WEX Construction FCI can be used to identify emerging trends within the construction industry and the national economy.
The indicators were tested at monthly, quarterly and annual frequencies,
with the greatest insights produced using the year-over-year percent
change of the monthly data. For
The WEX Construction FCI, which is available monthly in advance of the
Last month’s WEX Construction FCI reflected the upward trend for the index, and additional government data releases were generally in line with the 0.7% increase indicated by the seasonally-adjusted index in May. Private residential construction increased by 0.7% in May and construction spending excluding improvements – a good measure of activity – grew by 0.3% in the same period. Housing starts jumped in May by 6.8% to an annual rate of 914,000; however, housing permits slipped by 3.1% to an annual rate of 974,000, which reflects a setback since reaching a five-year high in April. Total construction put-in-place, which is released a month later than the WEX Construction FCI, increased by 0.5% in May. The total employment report was positive with an increase of 195,000 jobs, and the construction industry gained 13,000 jobs, which was better than expected. This indicated that the private sector is largely shrugging off the federal government spending sequester.
According to the IHS analysis, despite the month-to-month decrease in June for the WEX Construction FCI, the housing market has been showing signs of improvement. New home sales increased by 2.1% in May to a 476,000-unit annual rate. Meanwhile, existing home sales rose 4.2% in May and total inventory increased by 3.3%, which is a sign that rising home prices are bringing more homes onto the market, but inventory remains extremely lean.
Home prices continue to rise as a result of these lean inventories, low
interest rates, the growing economy, and the decreased share of
distressed homes. These higher home prices, in turn, are bringing more
builders into the market and boosting household wealth. Household real
estate wealth increased by
The WEX Construction FCI for
News media contact:
Jessica Roy, 207-523-6763