ABC: modest recovery of nonresidential construction continues in 2013

Updated Dec 14, 2012

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Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) has released its 2013 economic forecast for the United States commercial and industrial construction industry, which shows the continuation of a modest recovery for nonresidential construction next year.

Anirban Basu, ABC’s chief economist, said ABC expects nonresidential construction spending to increase 5.2 percent in 2013 due to the large reductions in nonresidential construction spending since the onset of the downturn.

Basu also said much of the construction expansion will be privately funded, while publicly funded construction spending will likely be low.

Due to the the fast-growing professional and business services industry, Basu predicted office-related construction to increase by 10 percent in 2013. Base said ABC anticipates total commercial construction to expand about 10 percent next year, while power will likely be up 10 percent; lodging up 8 percent; health care up 5 percent; and manufacturing up 5 percent.

Nonresidential building construction employment is predicted to expand 2.1 percent in 2013–better than the 1 percent performance ABC estimated for 2012–and construction materials prices will likely rise more quickly in 2013 than they did in 2012.

Additonally, Basu expects many investors to choose to invest in hard assets.