117.90 BlueTarp Financial, a creditmanagement company for B2B suppliers, recently released its Q1 2017 Building Supply Index. The Q1 index value is at 117.90, a material improvement from 107.74 in Q1 2016. To interpret the index, values below 100 reflect recessionary or recovering performance. Values about 100 reflect healthy economic activity. The index also calculates a trailing 12-month average to account for seasonality. March 2017 saw an all-time high of 121.28, indicating the outlook of the economy remains on an upward trend. 26 According to a study by the University of Tennessee, uncollected sales and use tax from all remote sales in 2015 was estimated to be $26 billion annually. 500 According to the Environmental Protection Agency, Congressional Budget Office and the U.S. Government Accountability Office, the projected shortfall in cleanwater infrastructure investment will approach $500 billion over the next two decades. 125.6 More from BlueTarp: March’s consumer confidence skyrocketed to 125.6, the highest it’s been since December 2001. BlueTarp also conducts a quarterly survey of its contractors to gauge sentiment on the current and future state of the economy. Q1 2017 contractor optimism for the next 12 months stabilized after seeing a spike in Q4 last year. 50,000 From ASA’s “Labor Study on the Future of our Workforce,” by the year 2025 nearly 50,000 employees in plumbing and PVF distribution will have retired, calling for a critical need to hire and train qualified replacements. 58.3 From HARDI Senior Economist Connor Lokar in the association’s monthly TRENDS report, the U.S. Remodeling Market Index reached 58.3 in the first quarter, up 7% from Q1 2016 and the highest mark since mid-2015. 57 From the American Supply Association’s materials for its recent Washington Legislative Fly-In, over a decade, 152,000 to 286,000 private-sector jobs may be lost as a result of the Health Insurance Tax, 57% of which will come from small businesses. The tax is levied on participants in the fully-insured market, where 87% of small businesses purchase their own health insurance.
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