For metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) across the U.S., the expansion index measures the dollar volume of projects (i.e., in ConstructConnect's extensive database) in all stages of preparation prior to construction field-work getting underway, at the beginning of any given month this year versus what was calculated at the same time last year. Expressed a little differently, it is the value of all the projects in the pipeline prior to groundbreakings or 'starts' now versus 12 months ago.
The types of structure covered are high-rise residential, non-res building and civil/heavy engineering.
Click icons to see city, state, and Expansion index
ConstructConnect's Expansion Index heat map for July 2017 is significantly warmer than cooler. 105 of the 378 MSAs (or 28%) have index values of 1.0 or lower, but 248 (or 65%) have index values between 1.0 and 3.0, indicating that the volume of projects in the contemplated and preparing plans stages is greater now than at the same time last year. And 25 MSAs (or 7%) have Expansion Index values of 3.0 or more, suggesting dollar volume market potential, year over year, that is 'red hot'.
For the U.S. as a whole, the latest Expansion Index reading is a solidly upbeat 1.40.
Alex Carrick, Chief Economist