Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Construction Spending Rose in February

Construction spending increased 0.1% in February, beating expectations due to a cold and snowy month and is currently 8.7% above the February 2013 estimate. Private non-residential construction led the growth. The report also revised down January’s headline number to a 0.2% decline.

Construction spending growth was driven by strong growth in private non-residential construction, reversing last month’s decline. Private non-residential construction increased 1.2% from the month prior. Private residential construction shrank 0.8% in February, but is still up 13.5% from a year ago. Adverse weather impacted private residential, much more so than private non-residential (power and utility structures). Multifamily construction, particularly in the warmer Sun-Belt metro regions, was strong and signals conditions could improve once temperatures rise.

One of the largest components of non-residential construction, spending on power and utilities structures, increased 4.4%, and is still up 7.9% from year ago levels.

Government spending rose 0.1%, but is down 1% from year ago levels.

Read the Census report.

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