US appetite for fibre cement drives Hardie’s growth

Building manufacturer James Hardie is performing more strongly than expected, and expects further growth due to the United States housing market’s recovery and its appetite for fibre cement.

The Australian reports that fibre cement, seen as more environmentally friendly than vinyl, is gaining in popularity as a choice for housing exteriors in the US.

“Repair and remodel has been a strong driver of James Hardie's primary demand growth. This is very encouraging, and demand growth seems to be building momentum,” Deutsche Bank analyst Emily Behncke told The Australian.

James Hardie is the market leader for fibre cement in the US. Fibre cement makes up 16 per cent of the market, up from 13 per cent in 2008.

James Hardie is based in Ireland but was established 124 years ago in Melbourne. Three quarters of its earnings come from its US sales.