March Cement Shipments Drop

Data recently released by the United States Geological Service shows 138,890 tons of cement were shipped to the state in March 2024. The tonnage is 8.9% lower than the volume for March 2023. For the first quarter, tonnage shipped to Alabama rose 1.3% over the first quarter of 2023.

Looking to ready mix volumes, we estimate 514,310 cubic yards of concrete were placed during the month.

Construction data from the University of Alabama (UA), the home building industry, and the American Institute of Architects provides a mixed message on the construction market. Nationally the AIA billing index is below 50. The same is true of the home builder sentiment that sits at 43 in the south. Anything below a 50 indicates declining construction. However, UA’s Center for Real Estate estimates home starts are up 19.7% over 2023 through May. While the data looks positive after the first quarter, concrete volumes are very uneven across the state. Some areas are very busy, but many have seen a significant slowdown. We anticipate a continued softening of yardage during the second quarter.

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