Each year since the recession, this special report has framed itself by explaining the tempered optimism within the industry. Uncertainty clouds the view of 2005, too, and it's especially frustrating as the same issue—Federal transportation funding—casts most of the shadow. But the watchword in 2005 has changed from uncertainty to patience.
We trust that you've found the Construction Equipment/Case Corp. 2005 Annual Report & Forecast useful. Construction Equipment has reported on the state of the economy and the industry with these annual reports for more than 20 years.
Our report is the largest exclusive survey in the industry of equipment owners and managers, including responses from equipment users, rental dealers and equipment distributors.
We have once again been fortunate enough to partner with two industry associations to further our understanding of the distribution and rental-dealer side of the industry. We extend thanks to The American Rental Association and the Associated Equipment Distributors for letting us poll their members this year.
We mailed the 2004–05 survey in mid-September. More than 11,000 questionnaires were mailed, with some 2,400 usable questionnaires returned for an overall response rate of 22 percent.
As in past years, we promised those who received our questionnaires, and especially those who responded, that we would publish the results for the benefit of the entire industry. This special report contains those results. To those whose participation made the 2005 Annual Report & Forecast a success, we thank you.
We also thank Case Corp., sponsor of the Annual Report & Forecast for the third consecutive year. Case is a full-line manufacturer of earthmoving equipment, and its support of this project has allowed us to publish substantial amounts of data and analysis for your use.