WEX Releases Monthly Construction Fuel Consumption Index (FCI) Results

  WEX Releases Monthly Construction Fuel Consumption Index (FCI) Results

  U.S. Construction Industry Fueling Increased 1.9% Year-Over-Year in March;
                       Down 0.9% versus Previous Month

Business Wire

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine -- April 25, 2013

WEX Inc. (NYSE: WEX), a leading provider of corporate payment solutions, in
collaboration with IHS, the leading global source of information and
analytics, today released results of its WEX Construction Fuel Consumption
Index (FCI), which indicated an increase of 1.9% in March versus its level at
the same time the previous year.

The WEX Construction FCI measures national fuel consumption statistics for the
construction industry, which provides an accurate and up-to-date indication of
construction activity in the United States.

WEX worked with IHS, Inc. to capture and analyze transaction data from its
closed loop network, which includes over 90 percent of the domestic retail
fuel locations. With this data, the WEX Construction FCI can be used to
identify emerging trends within the construction industry and the national
economy.

The indicators were tested at monthly, quarterly and annual frequencies, with
the greatest insights produced using the year-over-year percent change of the
monthly data. For March 2013, the WEX Construction FCI reported that fuel
consumption by U.S. construction companies increased 1.9% versus March 2012
and decreased by 0.9% versus the previous month.

The WEX Construction FCI, which is available monthly in advance of the U.S.
Census Bureau figures on construction spending, is available at
http://www.wexinc.com/fuel-consumption-index.

Last month’s WEX Construction FCI reflected the continued year-over-year
growth indicated by the seasonally-adjusted index in most of the government’s
subsequent construction data releases. Construction spending excluding
improvements – a good measure of activity – rose by 1.3% in February and
private residential construction also increased in the same period by 3.3%.
February housing permit statistics were promising, with total permits
increasing by 4.6% and housing starts ticked up by 0.8% in February, to an
annual rate of 917,000. Total construction put-in-place, which is released a
month later than the WEX Construction FCI, increased by 1.2% in February. In
March, the construction industry added 18,000 jobs after gaining 49,000 jobs
in February, which is the industry’s sixth consecutive double-digit monthly
increase.

IHS Analysis

According to the IHS analysis, the month-to-month decline in March for the WEX
Construction FCI follows a decline in new home sales in February. New home
sales fell by 4.6% in February to a 411,000-unit annual rate. Meanwhile,
existing home sales rose 0.8% in February and total inventory increased by
9.6% to 1.94 million units.

Despite the increase in new home sales, the existing home inventory remains
extremely lean and the lowest it has been in the month of February. This is
also due to the fact that home prices continue to rise as inventories are
lean, interest rates are low, the economy is growing and creating jobs, and
the share of distressed homes is dropping. Additionally, higher home prices,
in turn, are bringing more builders into the game. The housing market is
expected to continue to improve and outperform the rest of the economy over
the next few quarters, which is due to the low level of housing inventory and
low interest rates.

The WEX Construction FCI for March 2013 is available at
http://www.wexinc.com/fuel-consumption-index

About WEX Inc.

WEX Inc. (NYSE: WEX) is a leading provider of corporate payment solutions.
From its roots in fleet card payments beginning in 1983, WEX has expanded the
scope of its business into a multi-channel provider of corporate payment
solutions representing more than 7.6 million cardholders and offering
exceptional payment security and control across a wide spectrum of business
sectors. The Company’s operations include WEX Bank, Fleet One, Pacific Pride,
rapid! PayCard, Wright Express Prepaid Cards Australia, Wright Express Fuel
Cards Australia, Wright Express New Zealand and CorporatePay Limited, England,
as well as a majority equity position in UNIK S.A., Brazil. WEX and its
subsidiaries employ more than 1,300 associates. For more information about
WEX, please visit www.wexinc.com.

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Contact:

News media contact:
WEX Inc.
Jessica Roy, 207-523-6763
Jessica.Roy@wexinc.com
 
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