No further price actions were reported in March and there has been little change in commodity metal costs. Copper and zinc were flat and nickel was down roughly 7.0%, though all three remain high relative to last year.
Overall, the market outlook remains strong. Residential construction spending was up 1.8% in February and up 6.2% year-over-year. Commercial (building) construction was down 0.3% but still up 9.6% year-over-year.
There has been little or no change in many of the industrial segments since last month’s report, although there is optimism in the oil and gas market. Efficiencies implemented during the downturn are being realized and released 2017 capital spending plans show a significant increase in activity.
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