Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 51

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
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May 2017
The May issue of FenceSense was originally published on May 26, 2017.

Economic Roundup
The first read on the nation's Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
shows the economy expanded at a 0.7% annualized rate in the
first quarter 2017. The relatively modest growth rate had been
anticipated by many pundits and by financial markets. Despite
this modest growth in the first quarter, GDP has risen by 2.3%
over the last four quarters.
The softness and economic growth was relatively broad-based.
Personal consumption expenditures contributed a relatively
modest 0.23% to GDP growth. Much of the softness in
consumption spending was attributed to a pullback in
durable goods, particularly expenditures on motor vehicles
which clipped nearly half a percent off GDP growth.
Activity in the trade sector was essentially flat as export growth
was roughly offset by an increase in imports. Consumption
spending in the government sector contracted the first
quarter and its contribution to growth was a -0.3%.
The most interesting sector in the first quarter growth story was
that of gross private domestic investment. Increased activity
in the housing sector added 0.5% to GDP, but the interesting
investment story was on the nonresidential site. Nonresidential
construction and the purchasing of capital equipment
contributed 1.12% for first-quarter growth.
While the headline estimate of 0.7% growth in the first quarter
was somewhat disappointing, it needs to be noted that there
was a sharp reduction in private inventories during the quarter.
In fact, changes in private inventories lowered GDP growth by
0.93% for the quarter. As such, final sells are domestic product,
which measures what we sell rather than what we produce, was
up by 1.6%-actually stronger than in the fourth quarter 2016.
The other consequence of the first quarter inventory drawdown is
it increases the likelihood that GDP will be stronger in the second

quarter as businesses read build inventories and were depleted
early this year. Indeed, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta's
current "GDPnow" shows the data available through mid-May
suggest economic growth of around 4% in the second quarter.
Forward-looking indicators also suggest that economic growth
could be stronger in the current quarter. The Conference Board
Leading Economic Index (LEI) increased 0.3 percent in April to
126.9-again that followed a 0.3 percent increase in March and a
0.5 percent increase in February.
In the six-month period ending April 2017, the leading economic
index increased 2.4 percent, well above the growth of 0.7 percent
during the previous six months. Further, recent gains in the LEI
have been broad-based with eight of the 10 index components
showing gains in April. Only building permits and stock prices
showed negative contributions for the month.
Ataman Ozyildirim, director of business cycles and growth
research at The Conference Board, said that "the recent trend
in the U.S. LEI, led by the positive outlook of consumers and
financial markets, continues to point to a growing economy,
perhaps even a cyclical pickup."
Ozyildrirm also said that "first quarter's weak GDP growth is
likely a temporary hiccup as the economy returns to its long-term
trend of about 2 percent. While the majority of leading indicators
have been contributing positively in recent months, housing
permits followed by average workweek in manufacturing have
been the sources of weakness among the U.S. LEI components."
Labor market firms in April with 211,000 jobs added to nonfarm
payrolls. The increase helped alleviate concerns that job creation
was slowing due to the relatively modest 79,000 job gain in March.
Much of the job creation was at private service-producing
establishments where 173,000 position increases were recorded.
Among service providers, establishments in the leisure and
hospitality sector showed the strongest increase, rising by 55,000
jobs for the month. Education & health services and professional

www.americanfenceassociation.com | 51 | July/August 2017


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fencepost - July/August 2017

Editor’s Note
Executive Director’s Message
President’s Message
Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Setting Yourself Apart From the Competition
VMA
Cutting Fuel Costs With Fleet Tracking
Blue Ribbon Companies
The Right Gate for the Job
CLFMI
New Technologies Provide Global Reach for Access Systems
New Members
All About I-9s
Calendar
Good Fences and Good Neighbors
Minding Your Business
Fencesense
Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Intro
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - cover1
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - cover2
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 3
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 4
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 5
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 6
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 7
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 8
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 9
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 10
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 11
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 12
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Editor’s Note
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 14
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Executive Director’s Message
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 16
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - President’s Message
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 18
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Setting Yourself Apart From the Competition
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 21
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 22
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 23
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 24
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - VMA
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Cutting Fuel Costs With Fleet Tracking
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 27
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 28
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Blue Ribbon Companies
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - The Right Gate for the Job
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 31
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 32
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - CLFMI
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 34
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - New Technologies Provide Global Reach for Access Systems
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 36
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - New Members
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 38
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - All About I-9s
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 40
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 41
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 42
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Calendar
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Good Fences and Good Neighbors
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 45
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 46
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 47
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 48
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Minding Your Business
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 50
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Fencesense
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 52
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 53
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 54
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 55
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 56
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - 57
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - cover3
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - cover4
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - outsert1
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - outsert2
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - outsert3
Fencepost - July/August 2017 - outsert4
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