Construction spending in March rose 2% year over year but edged down 0.6% from February’s level, the Commerce Dept. has reported.
Commerce’s U.S. Census Bureau reported on May 1 that the estimated value of construction put in place in March totaled an annual rate of $966.6 billion, a 2% uptick from March 2014’s rate.
It also was slightly below February’s rate of $972.9 billion. The rates are adjusted for seasonal variations.
The key residential sector fell 2.3% from March 2014’s level, to a $354.7-billion rate, and also was off 1.6% from February.
Nonresidential construction recorded a 4.7% increase, year over year, to $611.8 billion, but slipped 0.1% compared with February’s level.
Among large segments, the value of power projects completed in March dropped 15.7% versus March 2014, to $89.4 billion and also declined 0.8% from February.
The highway and street sector was down 5.3% from its year-earlier rate, to $78.3 billion and was 2.4% below the February rate.
Brighter spots included offices, which jumped 19.8%, year over year, to $49.9 billion and increased 2.2% from February; and lodging, which surged 22% from March 2014 and rose 5.2% from February.
Total private construction posted a 2.9% gain, year over year, but declined 0.3% from February, reported the Census Bureau
Public construction was weaker, dipping 0.3% from the year-earlier level and falling 1.5% compared with February.