STATE OF BUSINESS: On the Rise

The construction industry is "well past the relatively mild recession.'' So last week reported F. W. Dodge Corp., the Boswell of building. May construction contracts—the best indicator of future building activity—rose to an alltime high of $3,403,000,000. Seasonally adjusted, awards ran at an annual rate of $35.9 billion, away up from last December's slump low of $25.3 billion. Sharpest gains came in publicly financed projects (up 14% from the year-ago level), a sign that the Government's highway-building program is picking up speed. Housing awards rose 4% above May 1957, though contracts for factory buildings fell 32% because of recession...

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