homepage home
subscribe to Southwest Contractor magazine subscribe
newsletters free e-newsletter
industry jobs industry jobs
Dodge Data & Analytics
Southwest Contractor Logo
Order Your RISK FREE Subscription

Stimulus To Lift Cement in 2010

Text size: A A

Cement consumption will rise by 5.2% this year, aided by federal stimulus spending, according to Portland Cement Association’s chief economist, Ed Sullivan. He gave a 2010-14 forecast on Feb. 2 at the World of Concrete show in Las Vegas.

Photo courtesy of Hanley Wood.
Chris Swanson of Rescue, Calif., demonstrates his artistry skills with decorative concrete by using acid etching and staining techniques to depict a unique cross design on a 10-ft by 10-ft slab.
----- Advertising -----

Last year’s administrative delays releasing American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds will result in a $22-billion federal spending surge this year, including more money for street and highway construction, which account for 30% of all cement consumption, Sullivan said. But the first half of 2010 will be “slow and tepid,” he noted.

Despite an expected 4-million-tonne bump in consumption this year, a full market recovery could take years, Sullivan warns. The recession has seen consumption drop by 54 million tonnes since 2006. “Clearly, the industry is hurting,” said Sullivan. “It will be a 10-year recovery, peak to trough.”

Financing woes, a housing downturn and unemployment have curtailed demand, resulting in capacity-expansion delays and cancellations as well as plant shutdowns. This could potentially impact future cement availability and pricing, observers say. Cement imports are anticipated to more than double in volume over the next four years to 12.7 million tonnes, Sullivan said.

“Congress and the Obama Administration knew that the $800 billion [stimulus bill] wasn’t enough,” said Sullivan. “It was a bridge...but we cut too many jobs—we’ve cut into the bone. At the end of 2012, we still won’t be at 2007 levels.”

A turnaround isn’t likely until construction spending improves and credit markets thaw. Lending requirements won’t loosen until employment shows six to nine months of sustained growth. “I still have tremendous optimism for a market recovery,” Sullivan added. “But I’m much more cautious of when it will happen.”

----- Advertising -----
Dodge Reports

Below is a brief listing of Projects Bidding in the South West. Click on any project to get Dodge Report, Plans and Specifications.

Click Here to See More Projects in the South West

Blog: From multiple ENR Southwest Bloggers
Our new blog delivers the latest project and people news, opinions and insights from the jobsite to the boardroom from the editors.
Reader Photos
Photos from Southwest Contractor Photo Showcase
Dodge Lead Center
Search for local construction projects OR CALL 877-234-4246 and get a FREE Lead Now!
Search by Project Type & State

----- Advertising -----
 Reader Comments:

Sign in to Comment

To write a comment about this story, please sign in. If this is your first time commenting on this site, you will be required to fill out a brief registration form. Your public username will be the beginning of the email address that you enter into the form (everything before the @ symbol). Other than that, none of the information that you enter will be publically displayed.

We welcome comments from all points of view. Off-topic or abusive comments, however, will be removed at the editors’ discretion.