On the first day of the World of Concrete 2014 Show in Las Vegas, the Portland Cement Association’s Chief Economist Ed Sullivan forecast 8 percent growth in cement production this year, according to Don Marsh, editor of Concrete Products, who is reporting from the show. Sullivan predicted that growth would be driven by across-the-board demand in residential, nonresidential and public construction.
According to Sullivan, there is currently an “unprecedented level of pent up demand” that puts the U.S. economy in good shape for growth going forward. Sullivan also noted that credit availability, job creation and a drop in consumer debt will also contribute to the rise in production.
In November 2013, Sullivan noted the impact congressional posturing has on the economy, and added that this year this still remains the case. “American consumers love drama,” he said. “Moreover, Congress knows how to create it, with more on the way when the debt ceiling talks resume in early 2014,” said Edward Sullivan, PCA group vice president and chief economist. “Each time the political circus on Capitol Hill addresses extensions of the debt limit, budget approvals or the fiscal cliff, it harms the burgeoning economic momentum.”
By 2018, the end of the forecast horizon, portland cement consumption is expected to reach nearly 119 Mt – roughly 3 percent below the past cyclical peak in 2005. This implies a 14-year recovery.