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Economy in Brief

U.S. Construction Spending Slumps
by Tom Moeller  September 4, 2012

The value of construction put-in-place fell a sharp 0.9% during July after an unrevised 0.4% June gain. A 0.4% increase had been expected. Private sector spending led the decline with a 1.2% drop (+15.0% y/y) after a 0.6% June uptick. Residential building fell 1.6% (+17.6% y/y), its first decline since March. Single-family construction dropped 1.5% (+19.1% y/y) but multi-family building jumped another 2.8% (44.5% y/y). The value of spending on improvements fell 5.5% (+14.9% y/y) and reversed three months of increase.

In the public sector, building activity slipped 0.4% m/m (-0.7% y/y). Spending on highways & streets, which is 29% of total public construction spending, slipped 0.3% (+5.2% y/y) after five consecutive months of increase. Transportation spending, which is 10% of total public, increased 0.7% (11.5% y/y) while office building rose another 1.1% (-2.1% y/y). Educational building activity continued lower by 0.6% (-5.0% y/y) and water supply construction fell 2.0% (-11.6% y/y).

The construction spending figures are in Haver's USECON database and the expectations figure is contained in the AS1REPNA database.

Follow That Money! How Global Banks Manage Liquidity Globally from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York is available here.

 

Construction Put in Place (%) Jul Jun May Y/Y 2011 2010 2009
Total -0.9 0.4 1.7 9.3 -3.1 -11.2 -15.3
 Private -1.2 0.6 1.8 15.0 -1.1 -15.2 -22.4
  Residential -1.6 2.4 3.3 19.0 -1.0 -2.9 -29.9
  Nonresidential -0.9 -0.9 0.4 11.7 -1.3 -24.0 -16.0
 Public -0.4 0.0 1.4 -0.7 -6.4 -3.6 2.1
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