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Guckes: Canadian total contemplated spending increases to 6-month high

Michael Guckes
Guckes: Canadian total contemplated spending increases to 6-month high

The March release of ConstructConnect’s Expansion Index registered another month of impressive gains for the construction industry across both the United States and Canada. At the national level, the U.S. index result reported a sequential month of strong double-digit gains, while Canada’s reading posted a six-month high.

The latest U.S. Expansion Index reading of 1.19 signaled a near 20% increase in the dollar value of February’s contemplated projects as compared to the same month a year ago. This reading marks the eighth consecutive month in which the Index has reported at least a 16% gain from year-ago levels before adjusting for inflation. Among the fastest-expanding states were Idaho, West Virginia, Texas, and Utah.

Regionally, the Ohio River Valley from Indiana through West Virginia, and the Southeast coastal states from Texas through Virginia, all reported above-average levels of expansion activity relative to the rest of the country. Note that geographies with lower readings do not necessarily indicate market weakness, as lower readings can result from exceptionally high contemplated construction spending in the comparable year-ago period.

The latest nationwide Canadian reading at 1.08 marks a sixth-month high thanks to rising levels of anticipated spending in New Brunswick, Ontario, and Manitoba, which more than offset contractionary readings in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador. 

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