October U.S. Construction Spending Continues Rising

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The U.S. Census Bureau reported this morning that construction spending in October rose by 1.4% to an estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of $872.1 billion from a revised estimate of $860.4 billion from September. Compared with October 2011, spending is up 9.6%. For the first 10 months of 2012, construction spending is up 9.3% year-over-year.

Spending on private residential construction rose 3% compared with the revised September rate. Private non-residential construction rose 0.3% and total private spending rose 1.6%. This represents a large gain from the 3.4% drop in total private spending in September.

In the private sector, single family residential construction is 29% higher than it was a year ago and multi-family construction is up 53.2% from October 2011. Private commercial construction is up 9.5% year-over-year.

In the public sector, total spending is up 0.8% year-over-year, although it fell by 1% compared with September. Spending on educational facilities rose 0.9% month-over-month and fell 2.8% from September 2011. Public residential construction rose 1.9% month-over-month, but has fallen 20.9% year-over-year.

Next month’s figures should include some rebuilding on the area hit by Hurricane Sandy, so another increase in construction spending looks to be on its way.

Paul Ausick

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