The biggest consumer in terms of industry sector was building and construction, representing 34.3% of the domestic market and accounting for 1.39 billion pounds of domestic shipments, an increase of 3% when compared with 2011.

The second biggest consumer was the doors and windows industry, which accounted for 32.6% of total shipments, although there was little growth in 2012, according to the AEC/AAA. Shipments to curtain wall, store fronts, and entrances represent 30.3% of the market sector and these end uses increased by 3.7% when compared with 2011.

Transportation accounted for 1.18 billion pounds in 2012 and represented 29% of total domestic shipments, an increase of 9% over 2011. Passenger cars, trucks, and buses accounted for 44.8% of shipments within this segment, followed by trailers and semi-trailers at 32.4%.

Other market sectors include consumer durables, machinery and equipment, electrical, and others. These sectors represent 10.5%, 12.4%, 11%, and 2.8% percent of total domestic shipments, respectively. Exports represent 6% of total industry shipments.

Figures on shipments and end-uses for the period 2001 to 2011 have been revised significantly, claims the AEC/AAA.

"The revisions are based on extensive research and efforts by members of both associations, and the process included a co-operative effort by billet suppliers and extruders to develop more accurate estimates of shipments and end uses," explained a press release issued by the AEC and the AAA.

“Going forward, we plan to conduct annual surveys on billet shipments and recovery rates to determine total shipments by the aluminum extrusion industry. The results of existing surveys, such as the AEC annual end-use survey, will be used to benchmark shipments to major markets and specific end uses,” said AEC president Rand Baldwin.

Tim Gill, vice president, business information and statistics for the AAA, said: "We are striving to continuously improve our estimates and both Associations encourage additional companies to participate in the monthly, quarterly and annual surveys, so that we can produce more accurate figures about the industry and its value to the North American economy,”

Source: The Aluminum Extruders Council (AEC) and The Aluminum Association