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Global Construction Equipment Industry Analysis


Global construction demand is expected to grow at a yearly rate of 6.5% through 2015 to reach a value in excess of $170 billion, according to Freedonia. EU and North America equipment sales are forecast to rise after an unprofitable period between 2008 and 2010. Growth in other regions such as Asia-Pacific and Africa-Mideast is expected to slow through 2015 in tandem with construction and mining activity.


The construction equipment and machinery industry has been hit by slow economic growth following the global financial crisis, which took a particular toll on global construction activity. Worldwide demand for construction equipment and machinery suffered a huge falling off after the 2008 economic downturn. Demand fell for three years running as investment in construction slowed. In particular, a fall in US domestic housing construction slowed heavy equipment sales.


Key Market Segments


Market growth in terms of sales of excavators, loaders and cranes is forecast to accelerate through 2015. As economic growth picks up again after the slow 2008 to 2010 period, demand for heavy equipment will rebound. Greater investment in urban development - including construction across industrial, commercial and residential sectors - will buoy demand for draglines and cranes. Demand for loaders will also grow as mining output rises. Growing profits in non-building construction and mining will boost demand for excavators.


Worldwide production of construction and mining machinery and equipment is expected to reach over 820,000 units by 2015, according to Global Industry Analysts. Emerging markets including Latin America and Asia-Pacific will lead demand with construction of commercial buildings, infrastructure, power plants and oil refineries. China’s machinery segment is lead by wheeled loaders, representing almost 65% of overall market share in 2010.


According to Global Industry Analysts, the global grinding machines market is forecast to reach almost $3.2 billion by 2015, driven by demand in developing markets. Increased activity in power, manufacturing and shipbuilding sectors along with economic growth in India and China are expected to fuel growth.


The worldwide material handling equipment market is expected to be worth almost $100 billion by 2015, according to Global Industry Analysts. Power, manufacturing and mining activity development is expected to fuel long-term market growth along with production process automation and growing demand from emerging markets. Development in industrial sectors such as food and beverage, chemicals and automotive, is expected to drive demand for material handling equipment.



Regional Markets


Developed nations are expected to lead demand for equipment, with North America expected to show close to 7% yearly growth in the five-year period ending 2015, according to Freedonia. The US market will be driven by residential construction spending gains, as the construction sector rebounds following the 2007 to 2010 downturn. Demand in Mexico is also forecast to grow in the same period.


There are around 700 companies operating on the US construction machinery manufacturing market, representing combined yearly profit of around $25 billion, according to Hoovers. It is a very concentrated industry with 85% of overall profit generated by the top 50 companies. US industry leaders include Terex, Hitachi, Caterpillar and Komatsu. Third-quarter construction activity in the US in 2011 pointed to a rebound in the construction industry, boding well for construction equipment demand.


Higher construction spending and greater mining activity will fuel growth in demand for construction machinery in East and West Europe. The EU’s adoption of Stage IV emissions regulation standards for off-highway engines will boost construction machinery prices, generating greater sales profits.


The largest share of new demand for construction equipment in the five-year period ending 2015 is expected to come from Asia-Pacific, according to Freedonia. Construction machinery sales are expected to increase almost 7% a year through 2015, fuelled by a higher degree of mining output and construction spending gains. China will represent almost 40% of new construction machinery demand until 2015, and growth will also accelerate in Indonesia and Malaysia.


India’s construction equipment market is expected to show 18% yearly growth from 2011 through 2014, according to RNCOS. Growth will be driven by construction industry investment by public and private sectors. In recent years the country has witnessed multibillion-dollar expenditure in developing power plants, telecommunications, ports and roads. India is expected to continue showing dynamic growth.


US Construction Machinery Import: Top 5 countries *In US$ Bn, October 2011



Industry Leaders


Key players in the construction equipment market include Caterpillar, Hitachi, Hanta, Mitsubishi, Terex, Xuzhou, Volvo, Sumitomo, TCM, CNH, Doosan Infracore, Dingsheng Tiangong, JCB, Kubota and Shandong Shantui.



Market Outlook


The US domestic construction equipment market has seen sales jump almost 60% over the past year. The rebuilding of rental fleets and increased exports in the utility, farming, manufacturing and mining sectors are driving sales higher. Equipment prices have risen just over 1% as production has not yet climbed back up to capacity levels. Prices for equipment and rentals continue to rise due to job site demand as the construction sector rebounds following a slow period caused by the economic downturn.



Leading Industry Associations




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