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First Look - May 2014


Martin Marietta’s First Quarter
Martin Marietta Materials reported first-quarter aggregates production volume up 8 percent.

Grow America Act
Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx unveiled the Grow America Act, a $302 billion, four-year surface transportation reauthorization.

Carmeuse Expands into Colombia
Carmeuse Lime & Stone closed on its acquisition of a majority interest in lime producer Procecal S.A.S., Medellin, Colombia.


MSHA WATCH

MSHA released preliminary data for calendar year 2013. The data shows that while the 2013 overall injury rate improved from the prior year to an historic low, fatality rates increased, driven by a high number of mining deaths in the fourth quarter of 2013 when 15 miners died.


USGS STATS

An estimated 292 million metric tons (Mt) of crushed stone was produced and shipped for consumption in the United States in the fourth quarter of 2013, an increase of 3 percent compared with that of the same period of 2012. The estimated annual output of crushed stone produced for consumption in 2013 was 1.19 billion metric tons (Gt), a slight increase compared with that of 2012.


ECONOMIC INDICATORS

A growing economy, pent-up demand, competitive mortgage rates and affordable home prices will keep housing on an upward trajectory through 2015. However, several obstacles including tight consumer credit, shortages of lots and labor, and rising materials prices are hindering a more robust recovery, according to economists who participated in the National Association of Home Builders 2014 Spring Construction Forecast Webinar.

New construction starts in March advanced 7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $521.4 billion, according to McGraw Hill Construction, a division of McGraw Hill Financial.

Led by a 6 percent rise in single-family starts, nationwide housing production rose 2.8 percent above an upwardly revised February rate of 920,000 to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 946,000 units in March, according to newly released figures from HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau.


ENERGY

WTI crude oil futures price
4/30/2014: $99.74/bbl, down $1.70 from week earlier; up $6.28 from year earlier.

Natural gas futures price
4/30/2014: $4.815/mmBtu, up $0.085 from week earlier; up $0.472 from year earlier.

Retail gasoline price
4/28/2014: $3.713/gal, up $0.030 from week earlier; up $0.193 from year earlier.

Crude oil inventories
4/25/2014: 399.4 mmbbl, up 1.7 mmbbl from week earlier; up 4.1 mmbbl from year earlier.

Weekly coal production
4/19/2014: 19.033 million tons, up 0.096 million tons from week earlier; up 0.851 million tons from year earlier.