Construction Spending Sees First Drop in Six Months
The Census Bureau said this morning thatrnconstruction spending in the U.S. dipped slightly in January but was well abovernoutlays a year earlier. Spending was atrna seasonally adjusted annual rate of $827.0 billion, 0.1 percent below thernrevised December figure of $827.6 billion. rnSpending was 7.1 percent above the January 2011 estimate of $772.0 billion.</p
Private construction spending duringrnJanuary was at an annual rate of $538.7 billion, nearly identical to thernDecember figure. Private spending a yearrnearlier was at a rate of $482,099 billion so the new figures represent an 11.7rnpercent increase.</p
Private residential construction was atrna rate of $253,639 billion compared to $249,196 billion in December and $237,643rnbillion in January of 2011. These werernincreases of 1.8 percent and 6.7 percent respectively.</p
Total public construction in January wasrn$288,331 billion annualized, down 0.2 percent from $288,956 in December. One year earlier public construction totaledrn$289,883 billion, 0.5 percent above the current level. Public residential construction in Januaryrnwas at a rate of $510 billion, down from $588 billion in December and $696rnbillion one year ago.</p
This isrnthe first pause in which has been considerable growth in construction since arndip in July. Since then spending hasrnrisen from $773,296 to $827,001 billion. The increase has been driven almost entirelyrnby growth in the private sector which has also risen every month sincernJuly. The growth of public spending hasrnfar less even, alternatively expanding and contracting every month from 277,345rnin July to itsrnpresent level.</p
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