According to a new construction industry report and forecast published by Wells Fargo’s National Sales manager John Crum, 2018 is looking to become one of, if not the best year for construction equipment sales in United States history! The Optimism Quotient (OQ) is a survey used to benchmark contractor and equipment distributor sentiment on local nonresidential construction activity. This year (2018) has scored 133 a 10-point increase over 2017. Both residential and non-residential construction industry activity have shown an increase in optimism stemming from a high level of approval of the current tax reform.
An OQ score of 100 or more represents a very strong optimism for increased local construction activity relative to the level of activity in the prior calendar year. A score of 75 to 99 represents a more cautious outlook for the industry and below 75 signals a belief that the industry will decrease. According to Crum “This is the highest optimism we have recorded in the last 20 years so that in and of itself is really good news” The information provided by these reports is often used by equipment retailers to assess the health of the market and forecast potential sales.
“This is the highest optimism we have recorded in the last 20 years so that in and of itself is really good news”
2017 was a very good year for construction equipment sales, and according to the construction industry outlook, it appears that 2018 will see further improvements and sales. The belief is that more than 76% of equipment distributors will see an increase in sales. Another effect this outlook has on the construction industry is that distributors expect a 55% percent increase in their rental fleets while only 7% said they will decrease their size, leading to more equipment sales and a general increase in market contribution.
While the data recorded above points to a very positive outlook for the Construction industry, finding and paying skilled labor remains the highest concern that may have a potential impact on net profits. For contractors, employee wages and other benefits (31%) and healthcare costs (18%) were the top of cost concerns. Distributors concerns over equipment costs (20%) and equipment rental costs (20%) remained the highest ranked. 50% of respondents said they were aware of pending changes to the accounting rules for leasing. Of the respondents that were aware 50% believe that these changes will greatly impact net profits, while 20% feel that there will be no impact at all.
“While the data recorded above points to a very positive outlook for the Construction industry, finding and paying skilled labor remains the highest concern that may have a potential impact on net profits.”
With the expected increase in equipment sales oil and lubricant suppliers have also taken precaution, increasing their stores while the cost of raw materials continues to rise. While not measured in the OQ report, the cost of fuel is always a factor in the estimation of net profit. Suppliers should anticipate a higher demand in energy and lubricant products to meet the growth in sales in the construction industry.
Will this projected growth in equipment and construction affect your company or you? What are your expectations from this forecast? Let us know below in the comments and consider subscribing for more news and information on construction, and many other industries.
The SC Fuels Team
How often do you find yourself using your debit card, your credit card, or any other form of plastic currency? Credit card companies are constantly renewing and improving their encryptions and safety measures in order to maintain your information’s safety; however, the less savory folk in our society are always developing new insidious ways to work around the safeguard in place by card providers. In today’s modern society there always seems to be a new threat to your privacy and security at every turn, today we will explore one of these threats; card skimming.
Card skimmers are tools used by thieves to steal your credit card information by placing a very hard to detect piece of material (usually plastic) over a card port where you would pay for a transaction, the tool would then record your information without you ever knowing that it happened. This is a common tool used for stealing credit card, debit card, fleet card, and other card information. Protecting your information from these thieves is vital, but difficult if you don’t know what to look for. Here are some clues to look out for when using your fleet card or credit card.
When using a card reader at any location be wary of the slider, be sure that it is not loose or flimsy as all of these machines are built very sturdy and should not come apart easily. The magnetic card strip readers are usually placed inside of plastic devices that are made to look just like card readers on ATM machines or gas station card readers. These devices are usually used with tiny cameras nearby to record your pin number. Usually, covering the number pad with one hand while using the other to enter your PIN is enough to ensure your PIN’s safety, however, if you feel anything is out of place on the machine it is best to just leave that station entirely.
Criminals like to target low hanging, easy fruit. The highest rate of card skimming theft is from non-bank ATM machines that are located in hard to see obscure spots or gas pumps that are furthest away from the service centers view. Avoid when possible any of these machines, but if that is not an option then a quick inspection of the machine’s card reader and keypad for any abnormalities or flaws. If you find any of these things to be out of place, letting the service station or business owner know who should then contact the local authorities. For a very in-depth picture gallery showing what card skimmer devices look like check out Krebson security’s gallery Here.
Thank you for taking the time to learn more about our ever-changing industry! If you found any of this information useful or interesting, then please consider subscribing below, or follow us on any of our social medias!
The SC Fuels Team
It’s cold outside! Winter is in full swing and spring is not looking to warm up. A remarkable phenomenon occurs when the temperature drops in liquids. Fluids condense and shrink in volume when the temperature is cold. Interestingly, the volume of fuel and gas drops as well, the same is true for the opposite. What does that mean for the average person filling their car, or an operator ordering bulk fuel? Well cozy up and let’s explore the adverse and strange effects of temperature on fuel.
Because diesel and gasoline are fluids, they become much denser when it is cold. We purchase fuel on a volume metric so this affects the amount of fuel you purchase when it is cold vs when it is hot. We promise there is science to this! The severity of change is measured by a coefficient of thermal expansion or β for short. A thermal expansion coefficient measures the change in volume (as a ratio) based on a change in temperature. Usually, units of this measurement are 10-6/K (how many millionths of the original volume does a liquid change with a change of one Kelvin). Let’s take a look at some cold hard numbers.
|Gasoline (petroleum and diesel)
(all above measure at 20°C)
Looking at the numbers above you can see that fuel and alcohol have the most change with temperature remember that these are tiny measures that when added together and compared show that there is about a 1% change in volume of gasoline for every 19°F change in temperature. Using this in easy to understand metrics, let us assume that a shipping company requires 1,000 gallons of fuel delivered when the temperature is about 60°. Early the next morning when that shipping company begins fueling their equipment at 40° they will only actually pump 990 gallons! A loss of 10 gallons of fuel adds up in the industry world. This is also theoretically true when you are pumping gas. When you pump gas in the cold you technically pump a volume that will expand with heat i.e your car’s internal temperature thus netting you a gain in volume and value
Now before you go and fill oil barrels to sell for a profit in warmer climates, understand that this is not the case in practice. At least for fueling stations, fuel is stored in highly thermo-regulated tanks that monitor and adjust the temperature of fuel keeping it at a cool comfortable 60°, meaning that you will almost always pump fuel at its natural resting state. However, ordering fuel delivery could prove to have the temperature play a part on your deliverables. Almost all fuel delivery trucks are temperature controlled to ensure that you are receiving the fuel you pay for, however where that fuel is utilized is another story! Storing fuel in the cold could produce a lower volume of fuel than what was delivered and may eat into costs of operations.
Take these natural occurrences into account when deciding where you will be storing your fuel on a worksite to maintain lower fuel costs in your industry.
We hope you enjoyed this information and found it useful. Please consider subscribing to our blog, or checking out our social media for more helpful tips and information in our ever-changing industry
The SC Fuels Team