Cement and Ready Mix Consumption Continues Upward Trend
Cement shipments to Alabama in February rose 2.4% over February 2016 data and 7.4% over January 2017 data. Alabama has been on a positive trajectory recently, with cement shipments in the state having risen for 12 of the last 14 months when compared to the same month for the previous year. Translating the cement shipments to ready mix totals, there has been an estimated 575,284 cubic yards of concrete placed in the first two months. The estimated yardage for the same period in 2016 was 559,246 yards. This represents a 2.8% increase of 2016.
Statewide Housing Permits Up 14.6% Over 2016
Residential permits issued for the first three months of 2017 have increased 14.6% of the previous year. Fourteen of the largest metropolitan areas have seen a jump in permits over the previous year with seven markets lagging. The greater Birmingham area is leading the state with an increase of 84% percent. Tuscaloosa, Mobile, and Baldwin County are also seeing strong growth in the first three months. Of concern is the slowdown in Huntsville and Montgomery with 14.4% and 38% drop in permits issued. The housing permit data is based upon single family permits issued in the state in a given month and will not directly correlate with the number of housing starts. Based on recent projections by the University of Alabama Center for Real Estate, the number of starts is between 10-15% lower than the permits issued.
Click here to view the data: Trendlines Newsletter May 2017