Construction Shows Improvement...Slowly

Slowly, construction shows improvement.

Is there a tougher businesss to be in than construction in the U.S.? Still, Eagle Materials , which makes concrete, cement and wallboard, reported earnings ahead of expectations — a gain of 4 cents, better than the loss of 3 cents expected.

The good news is that wallboard sales were up 40 percent compared to the same period last year. The bad news is that sales continue to fall in all the other segments.

Why the difference? Some noted that EXP and others are pushing through price increases in wallboard, and dealers may have ordered ahead of those increases. Just the ability to push through price increases is being greeted as good news.

Ever since existing and new home sales last week, these building material stocks have rocketed upward. US Gypsum, Cemex, and Vulcan are all up 10 to 20 percent in the past few days.

For the moment, they are moving on early indications of a building rebound.

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