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Commercial Construction Activity Up Despite Market Stresses

Oscar & Associates World of Concrete 2022 featured an abundance of exhibitors and product demonstrations at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Commercial construction activity is picking up, and the construction equipment market reflects that change. That's according to the latest EquipmentWatch monthly report, which focuses on data from recent months.

The latest EquipmentWatch report shows that commercial construction activity is picking up but activity levels continue to trend down.

“Commercial construction activity is picking up, and the construction equipment market reflects that change,” the report stated, which focuses on some of the latest numbers available.

Equipment prices recorded a slight uptick in April, up a percentage point over March 2022.

“Even though historical trends indicate April volume is generally down due to large volume in the secondary market in February and March, the current inventory shortage is very clearly a major issue for our industry,” the report said.

Some more good signs ...

EquipmentWatch Strategic Account Manager Nick Holsinger said the report isn’t all bad news.

Although the recent dip in overall activity is discouraging, our concerns are mitigated because the commercial activity is trending upwards, and the first projects from the infrastructure bill are coming online, specifically the I-35 and I-15 upgrade projects,” Holsinger said.

Concerns remain ...

Another insight revealed in the May EquipmentWatch report revealed that some may be holding onto equipment for longer to offset gas prices and to “brace themselves for a potential recession.”

The most popular types of equipment sold in March didn’t change from April, with crawler-mounted hydraulic excavators, 4-WD articulated wheel loaders, and compact track loaders rounding out the top spots.

The report said supply chain hurdles and production slowdowns are still plaguing the equipment market. Holsinger said he doesn’t foresee any improvements in the supply chain issues anytime soon.

Inflation, labor shortages, key scarcities such as semiconductors, and ever-increasing fuel costs have deep-seated causes which will not improve in the immediate future,” Holsinger said. “We need to look for demand destruction in fuel, an ease in the COVID pandemic, and hopefully peace in Ukraine to anticipate long-term relief in the supply chain.”

Download the EquipmentWatch report here.

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