FMI Corporation is a leading management and investment banking firm dedicated exclusively to engineer and construction, infrastructure and the built environment throughout North America and the world. FMI provides insight and research through reports, events and articles.
In FMI’s First Quarter 2017 Construction Outlook, some of the more noteworthy construction forecast data is as follows:
- Projections for construction put in place in 2017 is 6% growth. A drop from the hot pace of growth from 2013 through 2015, it seems to indicate that the recovery bounce is over and more normal growth is in store for the next few years.
- Commercial construction, especially in retail construction, is forecast to drop to 6% in 2017 and slip lower throughout our forecast horizon of 2020. The 20/20 vision for retail construction will likely look more like Amazon than Sears or any of the other big-box chains currently closing stores at an alarming rate.
- Unemployment remains at or below 5%. There are some signs of inflation, at least enough for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates a bit, but nothing like high inflation.
- The economy appears to be in good shape right now. That outlook may overlook the many challenges, economic and societal, that face North America. Troubles exist all around the world, and there will be economic consequences. However, we can only focus here on the immediate look at the construction industry where one of the biggest problems remains finding enough of the right people to get the work done.
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