Residential construction gains in January

Overall construction spending dipped ever so slightly in January 2012, decreasing 0.1% from the previous month’s estimate of $827.6 billion, according to the U.S. Commerce Department. In year-over-year figures, activity rose 7.1%, however. 

Spending on private residential construction rose 1.8% in January 2012 compared with December. Single-family homes registered $113.9 billion, a 2.5% monthly increase. New multi-family activity rose to $16.2 billion, a 0.7% increase compared with the previous month.

In year-over-year figures, residential construction spending grew by 6.7% to $253.6 billion. Single-family housing increased by 5.5%. and multi-family housing spiked with a 20% climb in spending.

Spending on non-residential projects such as hotels, offices, schools and healthcare facilities dropped 1.5% in January 2012 to $285.0 billion compared with December. In year-over-year figures, non-residential spending rose 16.6%. Across all sectors, it reached an estimated $816.4 billion in December 2011, according to the U.S. Commerce Department, a 1.5% increase above the revised November estimate. The December figure is 4.3% above the December 2010 estimate of $782.9 billion.

Much of the gain can be attributed to spending on nonresidential construction, which totaled an estimated $288.5 billion in December 2011, 3.3% above the previous month. The latest figures were also a 2.4% boost over December 2010, where spending on nonresidential construction hit $261.8 billion.

Spending on residential construction was reported at $241.2 billion in December, 0.8% above the November 2011 estimate of $239.4 billion.

In December, the estimated rate of public construction spending was $286.6 billion, 0.5% above November’s estimate of $285.3 billion.

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