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General Construction Contractors – Industry Analysis, Statistics, Trends, and Forecasts

SIC 1500  |  NAICS 236200

The following guide to industry research and analysis provides sources for industry statistics, trends, and forecasts, financial ratios, salary surveys, and more.

See the following sections listed below to view available resources by category:

For guides to other industries, see our index of over 400 industries.

Industry Analysis, Statistics, Trends, and Forecasts

Commercial, Industrial, Apartment & Municipal Building Contractors  (view reports)
Heavy Engineering, Highway, Road, Bridge & Pipeline Construction  (view reports)
Comprehensive industry research reports provide in-depth industry analysis and five-year forecasts, with special focus on the underlying structure and external forces and relationships that affect industries and their performance. Topics addressed in the reports include:
Sample industry research reports and selected industry statistics including market size, five-year average growth rate, number of businesses, and total employment are available free online.

BNP Media
Resources available from this organization include:

ENR Magazine
Weekly trade magazine features news, data, and analysis for construction industry professionals, with special features including the "Top 400 Contractors" report (May) which ranks these firms by annual revenue and the "Forecast" report (November) which summarizes forecasts published by various organizations. Selected articles from current and prior issues can be viewed free online.

Annual forecast report summarizes construction forecasts for the year ahead provided by various trade associations and research firms, with contributing sources including the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, Dodge Data & Analytics, FMI Corporation, and the Portland Cement Association. Summary article is available online, with full report available to subscribers.

FMI Corporation
Resources available from this organization include:

U.S. Markets Construction Overview
Comprehensive annual report addresses key issues and trends affecting the construction industry and includes historical and forecast dollar volume trend data for major market sectors and market segments within each sector on a regional basis for residential buildings, nonresidential buildings, and nonbuilding structures. Market overview for most recent calendar year is available free online.

FMI's Construction Outlook
Quarterly outlook provides an analysis of the economy and its impact on the construction industry and includes historical and forecast dollar volume trend data for major market sectors and market segments within each sector on a national basis for residential buildings, nonresidential buildings, and nonbuilding structures. Outlook reports for current and prior quarters are available free online.

U.S. Census Bureau
Value of Construction Put in Place

Monthly report estimates the total dollar value of work performed in the public and private sectors by month for the last six months with comparison to the prior year for the most recent month, with private sector categories including residential, office, lodging, commercial, healthcare, religious, educational, transportation, communications, and manufacturing. Report is available free online.

IRS Audit Technique Guides
Construction Industry

IRS audit guide provides an overview of the industry and its business practices with a primary focus on accounting and tax issues. Topics covered in individual chapters include small contractors, large contractors, long-term contracts, look-back method interest, financial accounting vs. tax accounting, home builders and developers, joint ventures, contractor costs per square foot, and other tax issues.

BizMiner Market Analysis Reports
Nonresidential Building Contractors  Search for "2362" to see available reports

Market analysis reports provide industry statistics for a user-defined area on a national, state, county, metro area, or zip code level, with data provided including number of companies, market volume and sales trends, average company sales, sales per employee, staffing and employment trends, average employee wage, and business start up activity and failure rates. Sample report can be viewed online.

Financial Statements and Financial Ratios

BizMiner Industry Financial Ratios
Nonresidential Building Contractors  Search for "2362" to see available reports
Five-year financial statement analysis reports provide income statements, balance sheets, and key industry financial ratios for companies of all sizes, with financial data available by sales size range on a national, state, and metropolitan area level including:
Sample financial ratio analysis can be viewed free online.

Financial Benchmarker

Annual financial benchmarker reports provide income statements, balance sheets, and key financial ratios by contractor category (e.g., all contractors, industrial and nonresidential, heavy and highway, and specialty trades), with survey results broken out by annual net sales volume, geographic region, and "Best in Class" performance (top quartile based on a composite ranking of selected key ratios).

Compensation and Salary Surveys

ERI Economic Research Institute
Construction Salary Survey

Annual survey provides compensation data for more than 190 jobs in various sectors of the industry, with information provided for each job position including job description, annual salary, incentive and variable pay, total direct compensation, trend line graph with data points, and selected occupational characteristics. Full list of job titles covered by the survey and participating firms is available online.

PAS, Inc.
Annual Compensation Surveys

PAS publishes several compensation surveys for the construction industry, with individual surveys covering executive positions, management personnel, support staff, and merit shop craft positions. Compensation data is broken out by contractor type, construction type, type of bids (e.g., cost plus, firm price), firm size based on annual revenues, and geographic region in which work is performed.

BV Guides and Databases

Business Valuation Guide
Chapter 28 - General Contractors and Specialty Subcontractor Issues
Hawkins, Paschall, Wolters Kluwer, annual

Chapter 28 focuses on specific issues relevant to the valuation of general contractors and specialty subcontractors, with topics addressed in this chapter including contractor segments, independence and relationship between segments, competition, backlog, project profitability and duration, contract pricing, bonding, weather, financial reporting, cyclical nature of business, and valuation implications.

Private company sales transaction data for over 900 industries.

Related Industries:
Architects and Architectural Services
Excavating and Demolition Contractors
Highway, Road, and Bridge Contractors
Home Builders and Residential Contractors


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