Real gross domestic product in the U.S. grew just 0.1% in the first quarter of 2014, but total equipment rental revenue in North America grew 6% over the same period. Rental revenue has grown at more than triple the rate of the general economy, according to the American Rental Association's (ARA) forecasts from its ARA Rental Market Monitor.
The market monitor's forecast, projects total equipment rental revenue in North America to grow 7.5% in 2014 to reach $40.8 billion, 10.4% in 2015 to reach $45 billion and another 9.3% in 2016 to $49.2 billion.
The general tool segment is expected to register the highest compound annual growth rate (CAGR) at 10.2% over the five-year forecast and will increase its share of total rental revenue from 24.2% in 2013 to 25.7% by 2018.
In the U.S. alone, total rental revenue in 2014 is forecast to reach $35.9 billion, up 7.7%, led by an 8.2% increase in construction and industrial rental revenue and a 7.3% increase in general tool revenue.