Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 53

Take a look at trends and issues with fence industry leaders and contractors across the country as they
share their insights into today's market and the future to help you make better business decisions. Every
major sector of the fence industry is represented on the FenceSense board, including an external economist
who watches the housing, construction, and public markets. To sign up to receive this monthly publication
automatically, please visit http://www.americanfenceassociation.com/fencesense/.

April 2017
The April issue of FenceSense was originally published on April 21, 2017.

Economic Roundup
Approaching the end of April, economic data has become
mixed. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta's GDPNow
indicator was consistent with first-quarter GDP growth
of a modest 0.5 percent. Even backing out an expected
0.7 percent drag on production due to an inventory drawdown,
expectations are that the headline number for GDP growth
will be well below the 2 percent that it averaged in 2016.
The March payrolls estimate also seem to confirm slower
growth. In March, nonfarm employment rose by 98,000
jobs. This followed two consecutive months in which payroll
employment had increased by over 200,000 jobs per month. With
the softer March data, gains in nonfarm employment averaged
178,000 over the past three months.

The results in the household survey were much more
favorable. In March, the unemployment rate dropped
0.2 percent to 4.5 percent. This decrease in the unemployment
rate occurred despite a 145,000 increase in the civilian
labor force. Household survey estimated that the number
of unemployed dropped by 326,000 for the month.

Goods-producing establishments added 28,000 jobs in
March. Some of the softness at good-producing firms was
due to a timid 6,000 job increase in the construction sector.
Construction employment had been steadily advancing
over the past several quarters. Manufacturing sector added
11,000 jobs in March, with all the gains concentrated in the
production of durable goods. The mining sector continued
its slow recovery, which began in the second half of 2016.

While the March payroll numbers were disappointing,
FenceSense always cautions against giving too much weight
to a single month of data.

At service-producing firms, job gains were heavily
concentrated in the professional and business services
arena, where employment rose by 56,000-less than 11,000
of those jobs were at temporary employment agencies.
Retail trade shed nearly 30,000 jobs in March, the second
consecutive large monthly decrease. Recent news over
financial stresses at big-box retailers may be beginning to
show up in the employment data. Healthcare added 16,700
jobs while financial services contributed another 9,000.

Another recent source of concern has been performance in
the retail sector. Retail and food services sales decreased
by 0.2 percent in March, reflecting the second monthly
drop in retail sales. However, it is important to note
that retail sales data is not adjusted for changes in price.
As such, price reductions at gasoline stations and from
motor vehicle dealers can hold down sales estimates.
By store category, the best performance was that of electronic
appliance stores and miscellaneous store retailers, which posted
gains of 2.6 percent and 1.8 percent for the month. Building
material suppliers and motor vehicle dealers posted decreases up
1.5 percent and 1.2 percent respectively.

www.americanfenceassociation.com | 53 | May/June 2017


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fencepost - May/June 2017

Editor’s Note
Executive Director’s Message
President’s Message
Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Fencelines
Mistaken Identity: A Story of Cedar
Safety First
Minding Your Business
Class Act: AFA Education Foundation Bestows Seven Scholarships
Safety
Health Plan Checkup: Ensuring Your Benefits Program Is the Picture of Health
CLFMI
The Road More Traveled: 811 Car and 811 Bike Recognized as Damage Prevention Icons
New Members
The 811 Across Texas Public Awareness Campaign
Calendar
FenceSense
Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Intro
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover1
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover2
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 4
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 5
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 6
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 7
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 8
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 9
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 10
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 11
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 12
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Editor’s Note
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 14
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Executive Director’s Message
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 16
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - President’s Message
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 18
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Fencelines
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 21
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Mistaken Identity: A Story of Cedar
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 23
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 24
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 25
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 26
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Safety First
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 28
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 29
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 30
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Minding Your Business
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 32
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 33
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Class Act: AFA Education Foundation Bestows Seven Scholarships
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 35
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 36
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Safety
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Health Plan Checkup: Ensuring Your Benefits Program Is the Picture of Health
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 39
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 40
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 41
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 42
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - CLFMI
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 44
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - The Road More Traveled: 811 Car and 811 Bike Recognized as Damage Prevention Icons
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 46
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - New Members
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 48
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - The 811 Across Texas Public Awareness Campaign
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 50
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Calendar
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 52
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - FenceSense
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 54
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 55
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 56
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 57
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 58
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 59
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 60
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 61
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover4
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert1
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert2
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert4
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