The latest survey of the U.S. construction industry by FMI calls for slow but solid growth in the engineering and construction industry. The report cites low energy prices, low inflation, unemployment (high, but holding at 6.2%) and slow growth in the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) number. Additionally, FMI says consumer confidence is rising steadily, building permits and housing starts bounced back in July, and banks are starting to lend more to credit-worthy clients.
FMI says sectors such as power, conservation and development, and transportation will continue to see growth ahead of GDP. However, water supply, sewage and waste disposal, and highway and street construction will be weaker.
Multifamily construction is still expected to grow at a good pace of 13% in 2015, after reaching a near-record pace in 2014. The inventory for new homes increased to six months in July, showing some weakness in sales, but housing starts in July were 21.7% above July 2013 levels.