Construction Spending Highest Since December 2008 Elaine Golden-Gealer

Construction spending in July was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $981.3 billion the Census Bureau said today–the highest since December 2008.  That was an increase of 1.8 percent from June’s revised estimate of $963.7 billion (up from the original estimate of $950.2 billion) and was 8.7 percent higher than the estimate of $906.6 billion in July 2013.  Total residential spending was at an annual rate of $363.5 billion compared to $360.8 billion in June and $337.9 billion a year earlier, increases of 0.7 and 7.6 percent respectively.

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis total construction spending in July was $88.6 billion compared to $86.70 billion in June and $83.3 billion a year earlier.  Non-seasonally adjusted residential spending was $33.3 billion.

Through the end of July the 2014 estimate for construction put in place is $535.4 billion.  This is 7.9 percent higher than the year-to-date figure for the same period in 2013 of $496.3 billion.  Residential construction for the year-to-date was $202.6 billion, a 9.3 percent gain from 2013.

Private construction expenditures in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $701.7 billion, up 1.4 percent from the revised (from $685.5 billion) June estimate of $692.2 billion and 10.9 percent above spending in July 2013 of $632.7 billion.

Private residential spending was at a rate of $358.1 billion compared to $355.6 billion in June and $331.5 billion in July 2013, increases of 0.7 percent and 8.0 percent.  Single family construction comprised $187.1 billion of the total and multifamily construction $43.3 billion.  The multifamily expenditures were 41 percent higher than in July 2013.

Total spending on private construction was up 11.3 percent from year-to-date expenditures in 2013 at a total of $387.3 billion.  Year-to-date spending on residential construction was $199.7 billion at the end of June, a 9.8 percent increase from the same period in 2013.  There was again a significant increase in multi-family construction spending.  So far in 2014 $23.8 billion has been spent, a 35.8 percent increase from 2013.  On a non-adjusted basis total private construction in July totaled $61.5 billion and residential construction $32.85 billion.

Total public sector construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $279.6 billion, a 3.0 percent increase from June’s estimate of $271.5 billion.  So far in 2014 public construction has totaled $148.2 billion, virtually unchanged from the same time last year.

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