Ventura County's construction industry staged a strong comeback last year, but the recovery slowed in the final quarter as rising interest rates put a damper on home sales and building projects.
Still, there's a good chance that the industry will improve on last year's performance, says Ben Bartolotto, research director of the Construction Industry Research Board. "Even if interest rates go up another half point in the next 12 to 18 months, I expect the construction industry in Ventura County to be strong in 1995," he said. "Mainly, that's because the county's residential market appears to be strong."
Bartolotto expects a lull early in the year, followed by a resurgence after the first quarter. But the recovery could skid to a halt if the Federal Reserve boosts rates more than another half percentage point, he warns.
The board, a Burbank-based industry group, says construction of all kinds in Ventura County totaled $565.2 million last year, compared with $460.6 million in 1993.