Average construction material/supply prices rose 0.1% from May to June. Prices in the construction industry have now increased during the past four consecutive months after a decline of 0.9% from full-year 2000 to full-year 2002. However, compared with prices in June 2001, average prices received by U.S. manufacturers of construction supplies and materials during June 2002 were down 0.2%, after over-the-year increases during the past two months.
Overall lumber prices moved 2.7% lower during June. This was the second straight monthly decline after lumber prices had risen during each of the first four months of 2002. Consequently, the price index covering all softwood and hardwood lumber was still 2.5% higher during June 2002 than it had been during the final month of 2001. But average lumber prices this June were 8.2% lower than during June 2001.
Gypsum product price - which had soared by 5.3% from April to May - increased by 0.4% during June. But average gypsum product prices this June were 19.6% higher than during June 2001 - after declining by 22.3% (on an annual average basis of measure) from 2000 to 2001.
Average prices for ceramic floor and wall tile have - uncharacteristically - crept higher for three consecutive months after a May-to-June increase of 0.7%. The price indexes for two petroleum-based construction products - asphalt/tar shingles (+4.4% in June) and paving asphalt (+1.7%) also moved sharply higher after recording little movement during the first five months of 2002.
Much smaller over-the-month increases were recorded in the average prices received for plumbing products (+0.1%) and lighting fixtures (+0.4%). The price indexes for four construction materials/product groups declined by 0.3% from May to June: ready-mix concrete, structural steel, hand/edge tools, and builders' hardware.
Average prices were lower this June than during June 2001 for ceramic floor & wall tile products (-17.4%), lumber (-8.2%), structural steel (-2.3%), flat glass (-1.3%) and lighting fixtures (-0.2%). Prices had risen over the 12 months ending in June 2002 for gypsum products (+19.6%), asphalt/tar shingles (+4.0%), paving asphalt (+1.7%), builders' hardware (+1.7%), plumbing products (+0.7%), unitary air-conditioning units (+0.6%), ready-mix concrete (+0.5%) and hand/edge tools (+0.4%). The price composite covering the full range of construction materials and supplies was 0.2% lower this June than during June 2001.