Construction rose 3% in April from its year-earlier level, to an estimated annual rate of $1,346.2 billion, seasonally adjusted, the Commerce Dept. has reported. But last month's spending also was down from March's figure.

In a June 1 report, Commerce  said that spending fell 2.9% from the March level, with private spending down 3% and public spending posting a 2.5% decline.

The report, from the U.S. Census Bureau—which is part of the Commerce Dept.—measures the value of construction put in place in a given month.

April residential construction in the private sector declined 4.5% from March, adjusted for seasonal variations, while non-residential work fell 1.3% in the same time period.

Public-sector educational construction declined 2.3% from March totals and highway construction dropped 5.2% seasonally adjusted, Commerce said.