Construction Economic News

Stay up to date on the latest construction economic news and get in-depth analysis and insights from Chief Economist Alex Carrick and Senior Economist Michael Guckes.

Michael Guckes, Senior Economist

Michael Guckes is Senior Economist for ConstructConnect. He is an international speaker on the North American construction market. Michael has over a decade of economics-related experience in the construction and manufacturing industries.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
August 14th, 2023

Stress readings in the week ending August 12th provided further encouraging news for the industry. Delayed and On hold project levels both fell during the latest week. Historically the third quarter of the year marks the seasonal apex in on hold and abandoned project levels; however, 2023 levels thus far are on track to be their lowest since 2020. These encouraging results have come notwithstanding rising bank standards for CRE loans and higher financing costs.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
August 10th, 2023

The Construction Economics Brief, produced by ConstructConnect’s economics team, is a monthly video series whose aim is to provide the latest and most pertinent economic information to construction industry leaders in a concise video format.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
August 3rd, 2023

Challenging economic conditions in China will have ramifications for U.S. prices, and certainly within the construction industry. In its latest GDP data release, China’s economy grew at an annualized rate of 6.3%, marking one of the slowest pre-COVID-19 growth readings since at least the 1990s.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
July 27th, 2023

On July 26, the Federal Reserve increased the benchmark Fed Funds Rate (FFR) to 5.25%, marking the 11th consecutive time that the Fed has raised rates since early 2022. Never in history has the Fed raised the FFR this aggressively. As the Fed increases the FFR, it indirectly raises the cost of borrowing for public and private borrowers. This benchmark, which influences the rate of all other U.S. debt products, is presently at its highest level in more than 22 years.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
July 21st, 2023

The Construction Economics Brief, produced by ConstructConnect’s economics team, is a monthly video series whose aim is to provide the latest and most pertinent economic information to construction industry leaders in a concise video format.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
July 14th, 2023

U.S. consumer prices increased by 3.0% in the year period ending June 30, 2023, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This marked the slowest recorded rate of inflation in over two years. At that time, prices were only just beginning their historic rise caused by a combination of surging demand, crippled supply chains, and hampered production.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
July 11th, 2023

ConstructConnect’s Expansion Index data through the end of June 2023 reported accelerating contemplated spending growth in the U.S. and Canada at the rate of 16% and 5%, respectively. Rising contemplated spending in the provinces of Alberta, Nova Scotia, and Ontario offset contracting results in Newfoundland and Quebec. Canada’s overall reading was slowed by a substantially lower reading for Quebec from the month prior.

Blog Feature

ConstructConnect's Project Stress Index is a new resource that tracks changes in the level of projects that are delayed, placed on hold, or abandoned based on weekly construction activity data.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
June 29th, 2023

The recent history of global energy price movements is unprecedented. Not since at least World War II have energy firms, or their customers, experienced the severity and frequency of price shocks that have occurred as a result of COVID-19 and, more recently, the war in Ukraine.

Blog Feature

By: Michael Guckes, Senior Economist
June 27th, 2023

The economics team at ConstructConnect frequently emphasizes the importance that geography and market verticals have on the future prospects of any construction firm. Freely available data from our Expansion Index makes it possible for any construction business owner with a computer to view for themselves the expected divergence in anticipated construction spending by metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and market vertical. ConstructConnect Insight allows users to see not only historical construction spending by MSA and vertical, but forecast expectations as well.