Private sector construction in the U.S. fueled a continued rebound in overall construction spending in April, according to figures released Friday by the Commerce Department.
Total construction spending for the month came in at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $820.7 billion in April, reflecting a 0.3 percent increase over revised March levels.
While the 0.3 percent growth rate was slightly slower than the 0.4 percent growth predicted by most economists, it comes atop revised figures that showed construction spending growing at 0.3 percent in March, upwardly revised from the 0.1 percent increase initially reported.
Furthermore, February construction spending figures, which had initially shown a 1.4 percent drop, were revised to show a less severe 0.4 percent decline.
Private construction, primarily in the residential sector, drove the overall increase in construction spending in the country for April.
Overall, private construction spending was up 1.2 percent, with a 2.8 percent increase in residential construction spending more than offsetting a 0.2 percent drop in non-residential construction spending.
In raw dollar terms, private residential construction spending reached the highest level on a monthly basis since February 2009, according to Commerce Department figures, with overall private construction spending at the highest raw dollar level since October of that same year.
Meanwhile, public construction spending declined for the fifth month in a row, falling by 1.4 percent to the lowest level in raw dollar terms since December 2006.
State and local construction spending fell 1 percent, bringing raw dollar levels to their lowest point since November 2006, while the smaller federal construction sector saw a 5 percent decline.
Of the overall decline in public sector construction, educational construction spending fell by 0.9 percent, while highway construction spending rose by 0.4 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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