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US construction spending rises

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July spending up 1.8 percent from the previous month.

CDR Staff September 3, 2014

Figures from the U.S. Commerce Department indicate construction spending increased by 1.8 percent in July 2014, reflecting the single largest monthly gain since May 2012.

According to an Associated Press (AP) summary of the figures, “All major categories of construction showed gains in an encouraging sign that spending on building projects will help boost the economy in the second half of [2014].”

The 1.8 percent increase in July followed a 0.9 percent decline in June, which had marked the largest spending reduction in one year.

According to AP, “the July rebound pushed total construction to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $981.3 billion, the highest level since December 2008.”

Construction spending as of July 2014 is 8.2 percent higher than it was in July 2013, with the most recent spending increases occurring in all three major sectors: housing, non-residential and government (infrastructure) projects.

According to a Reuters write-up on the July figures, state and local government construction spending has rebounded considerably in the summer of 2014. “Construction spending in July was buoyed by a 3.4 percent jump in state and local government projects, which lifted outlays to their highest level since June 2012. The increase in state and local government outlays, which was the largest since April 2013, offset a 1.1 percent drop in spending by the federal government on construction projects,” says Reuters.


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