Prefabricated Metal Buildings and Components

SIC 3448

Companies in this industry

Industry report:

This category covers establishments primarily engaged in manufacturing portable and other prefabricated metal buildings and parts and prefabricated exterior metal panels.

After steady growth in the first decade of the 2000s, an estimated 1,948 establishments engaged in manufacturing portable and other prefabricated metal buildings and parts, including prefabricated metal panels in 2009. Revenues totaled $6.3 in 2009, and the workforce numbered 35,783 employees. Prefabricated metal buildings and components maintained 682 manufacturing facilities, or 35 percent in market share. Together, they employed 12,316 workers and earned $1.12 billion in revenue.

Other significant categories in 2009 included the manufacturing of prefabricated metal portable buildings with 320 establishments, or 16.4 percent of the industry total, shipping $946.1 million in products; 166 manufacturing facilities for prefabricated metal buildings, or 8.5 percent of the industry total, employing 6,264 employees with $3.13 million in product revenue; and 131 manufacturers of screen enclosures, or 6.7 percent of the market, shipping $68.8 million in products. In addition, 109 manufacturers of prefabricated metal sunrooms who contributed $79.5 million, or 5.6 percent in market share.

States with the highest concentration based on market share by number of firms were Texas with 11.3 percent, Florida with 10.3 percent, California with 6.9 percent, and Georgia with 5.4 percent. Other states with a significant number of employees included Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. Texas led all states with 5,410 employees and $3.3 billion in revenues.

In the mid-1990s, the prefabricated metal buildings industry shipped $4.2 billion worth of products, including portable buildings and houses, silos, greenhouses, carports and garages, and other prefabricated metal buildings. Consistent growth continued into the 2000s. The largest division within this industry was non-residential or farm prefabricated building systems, which included industrial and commercial, institutional, medical, and religious buildings.

Employment levels climbed steadily over the 1980s. Throughout the early 1990s, however, the employment rate fluctuated. By the early 2000s, the number of establishments began to stabilize and grow, from 628 in 2001 to 760 in 2005. In contrast, industry employment tapered off from 28,203 jobs in 2001 to 27,435 in 2005, although payroll figures increased to $1 billion in 2005 from $914 million in 2001. The overall employment outlook for the fabricated metal product manufacturing industry was expected to be one of slow but steady growth into 2012.

Due to a decrease in the construction of both office buildings and commercial and industrial sites in the early 1990s, the prefabricated metal building industry suffered a slight decline in sales. Nevertheless, the industry continued to expand, with new technologies and environmental concerns giving the industry a small boost. Shipments to this sector showed some increases in the 2000s as new uses for prefabricated buildings were uncovered.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the residential construction industry was booming, and an increase in demand for products relevant to that division of the industry was predicted to make up for the slack in commercial demand. Manufactured housing stepped up its production as highlighted by the more than 373,000 manufactured home shipments in 1998 that marked a high point for the industry. However, the market became saturated and production declined sharply in subsequent years, with fewer than 131,000 total shipments in 2004, representing a 65 percent decrease, coupled with consumer over-financing that led to high rates of loan delinquencies.

An upswing in the industry occurred in late 2005 due to the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed massive amounts of housing and displaced residents in the New Orleans area, causing the U.S. government to purchase 25,000 units for those affected at a cost of nearly $900 million.

In general, manufacturers continue to improve the design and construction of manufactured housing in hopes of stimulating a revival by offering two-story and single-family attached homes and marketing to urban and suburban neighborhoods rather than the traditional rural settings. However, the anticipated recovery of this segment of the industry that had been based on attracting new and different customers, such as aging baby boomers and those looking for vacation homes, has not come to fruition.

Demand for manufactured homes plummeted from a high of 146,744 in 2005 to 117,510 in 2006. That downward trend continued with 95,769 manufactured homes shipped in 2007, a clear indication the U.S. government's orders had waned. The unprecedented deteriorating market conditions, coupled with increased steel prices, forced industry leader, NCI Building Systems, Inc. to shed 20 percent of its workforce, and the closure of four plants followed. Industry revenues reached $11.2 billion with 42,577 employees in 2008.

However, the severe impact of the economic conditions caught up to the industry in 2009. By mid-2009, residential construction fell 48 percent. By the end of 2009, new houses starts were at a 50-year low, the lowest since data began being collected by the federal government. Other segments of construction were also depressed; nonresidential construction also dropped to the lowest it had been in 44 years, since data began being recorded. According to McGraw-Hill, as reported in NCI 's 2009 Annual Report, commercial and industrial construction fell off by as much as 54 percent during 2009. The effects of worsening economic conditions, especially on end markets, resulted in challenging conditions within the prefabricated metal buildings and component manufacturing industry and the markets it served. At the same time, steel prices were highly volatile, increasing by 82 percent during 2008 and then dropping by 58 percent in June 2009. As a result of these unstable and highly unfavorable economic conditions, in 2009, industry revenues fell by nearly $5 billion to $6.3 billion.

NCI Building Systems, Inc. (NCS), still one of the largest integrated manufacturers of metal products for the nonresidential building industry, was comprised of 39 manufacturing facilities across the United States and Mexico, with additional sales and distribution offices throughout the nation and Canada. In 2008 NCI posted a net profit of $130.4 million on $1.7 billion in revenues, with 5,394 employees. In 2009, the company 's revenues dropped to $967.9 million, resulting in a net loss of $801.5 million. NCI slashed its number of employees in 2009 by about 40 percent to 3.673.

Varco Pruden Buildings, Inc., which is commonly known as VP Buildings, manufactured about 6,000 nonresidential metal buildings annually, prior to the recession. VP Buildings was purchased by Australia 's BlueScope Steel in 2008. American Buildings Company is another leader in the industry. American Buildings was acquired by steel giant Nucor in 2007.

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News and information about Prefabricated Metal Buildings and Components

Monthly establishment data: not seasonally adjusted data: employment: national.
Employment and Earnings; April 1, 2006; 700+ words
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Monthly establishment data: not seasonally adjusted data: hours and earnings: national.
Employment and Earnings; January 1, 2006; 700+ words
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Not seasonally adjusted data: employment: national.
Employment and Earnings; February 1, 2005; 700+ words
...332212 Architectural and structural metals 3323 Plate work and fabricated structural products 33231 Prefabricated metal buildings and components 332311 Fabricated structural metal products 332312 Plate work 332313 Ornamental and architectural metal...
Establishment data.(HOURS AND EARNING NOT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED-NOT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED)(Illustration)
Employment and Earnings; May 1, 2005; 700+ words
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Not seasonally adjusted data: hours and earnings: national.(Part 1)
Employment and Earnings; February 1, 2005; 700+ words
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Table 5. Producer price indexes for the net output of selected industries and their products, not seasonally adjusted.(Part III)(Table)
PPI Detailed Report; July 1, 2007; 700+ words
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