The latest version of the Quikrete Industry Dashboard included the just-released number for the national unemployment rate, which declined to 3.8 percent in February compared to 4.0 percent in January.
The construction industry added 60,000 jobs in February, with about 75 percent of those gains occurring in specialty trade contractors. Employment in the retail trade rose by 37,000 in February, with significant monthly gains in building material and garden supply stores (up 12,000).
Gas prices continued to rise. The American Automobile Association reported the average price for a gallon of regular gas across the country is $3.73. That’s up from $3.41 last month, and up from $2.74 a year ago.
Stock prices continue their volatile trajectories. BLDR is setting the pace, up 73% over the last 12 months, and up 7.7% for the month, while the majority of stocks tracked are down for the month.
Coming soon: Monthly retail sales (NACIS 444) will be released March 16.