Construction spending falls 0.7% in August

Updated Oct 4, 2016

shutterstock_112558970U.S. construction spending fell 0.7 percent in August as spending on both residential and nonresidential projects fell during the month.

Construction spending is at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of $1.142 trillion, according to preliminary data from the Commerce Department. With the August decrease, the spending rate has fallen 0.3 percent below the August 2015 rate.

Spending in the private homebuilding sector fell 0.3 percent to $449 billion, but remains 1.4 percent above the year-ago rate. Spending on the construction of single-family homes fell 0.9 percent during August to a rate of $235 billion, while multi-family housing spending rose 2.4 percent to $62 billion.

Nonresidential spending fell 1.1 percent to a rate of $686.6 billion and is now 1.3 percent below the August 2015 rate. Top percentage declines for the sector were transportation, down 6.3 percent to $41 billion; public safety, down 4.5 percent to $7.5 billion and religious, down 3.2 percent to $3.6 billion. Top percentage gains were conservation and development, up 6.2 percent to $7.5 billion, and water supply, up 1.6 percent to $12.1 billion.

Total spending from the private sector fell 0.3 percent to $871.6 billion while government spending fell 2 percent to $270.5 billion.