The BlueTarp Building Supply Index - 2016 Q2

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image showing the BlueTarp 2016 Q2 Index is 117.49 and the 2015 Q2 Index is 123.94

line graph showing The BlueTarp Building Supply Index performance going from 2008 to 2016 Q2


How to Interpret the Index

BlueTarp’s Building Supply Index is a quarterly measure of the economic health of the building supply industry. The index is a weighted composite of proprietary BlueTarp spending and delinquency data as well as three macro-economic factors: building permits, construction spend, and consumer confidence.  BlueTarp’s spending and delinquency data offers a unique cross-section of the industry, representing trends from experience with 120,000 pro customers at over 2,000 suppliers across the United States including hardware stores, lumber yards, building material suppliers, flooring, and plumbing/HVAC. 

The index value of 100 is benchmarked to Q2 2012. Values below 100 reflect recessionary or recovering performance.  Values above 100 reflect healthy economic activity. Because the index is not seasonally adjusted, the best way to interpret trends is to compare current quarter performance to the same quarter the previous year.  A higher value vs. previous year reflects further strengthening. A lower value would indicate weakening.

Macro-economic data points can be restated up to four months post release. 

Macro-Economic Drivers:

three graphs showing macro economic drivers, the first is Consumer Confidence, the second Construction Spend, the third for building permits

scatter plot graph showing Spend Vs Delinquency for Q2


How to Read This: 

The scatterplot above reflects indexed spend and delinquency data from pro customers of BlueTarp’s 2,000+ suppliers across the US. Each data point reflects the average Q2 spend and delinquency for a given year.  The best way to read is to compare the direction of the spend and 
delinquency trends one year to the next.  Q2 2016 reflects the same elevated delinquency levels of Q2 2015 but lower spend performance, which is somewhat inconsistent with other index metrics.  

Bar graph showing recent Contractor Sentiment for 2016 Sales vs 2015, and 2017 Outlook vs. 2016



  • Vast majority of contractors see 2016 sales as the same or better than 2015 
  • Perceptions of 2017 are more measured with nearly 35% expecting sales to be more sluggish or in a recession
  • Comments suggest uncertainty related to the US presidential election and feared increases in material costs are driving the skeptical outlook
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The BlueTarp Building Supply Index - 2016 Q3
The BlueTarp Building Supply Index - 2016 Q3

BlueTarp's quarterly measure of the economic health of the building supply industry shows that the industry...

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