Construction spending tumbles to 10-year low

Construction spending fell 2.5 percent in December to a $788 billion seasonally adjusted annual rate, the lowest level in a decade, reports the Associated General Contractors of America in analysis of Census Bureau data. All three major categories – private residential, private nonresidential and public construction – shared in the decline.

However, there were a few bright spots. Power construction climbed for the fifth straight month and finished the year 13 percent higher than in December 2009, due to a mix of oil and gas-fired power plants, renewable power projects and transmission lines. Highway and street construction slipped 1.6 percent in December but was 7.6 percent of the year-earlier level. Spending on transportation facilities, such as truck terminals, airports and transit projects, was up slightly from November and from year-ago levels.

For more information, view the Census Bureau data.