Assessing January Starts is Always a Challenge ConstructConnect announced today that the latest month’s volume of construction starts, excluding residential work, was $29.7 billion (green shaded box, Table 3 below), -14.0% versus December 2019’s figure of $34.5 billion (originally reported as $34.0 billion). The decline was greater than the usual step back due to seasonality of -10.0%. ‘Seasonality’ refers to increases or decreases in activity due to favorable or unfavorable weather. Winter qualifies as unfavorable.
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Clichés are often true and it is the case that a picture can be worth a thousand words.
America’s Jobs Jump an Impressive +225,000 in Latest Month U.S. jobs creation in January, on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis and as calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), was a strikingly good +225,000. While +225,000 was down somewhat from the +269,000 figure for January of last year, it was well ahead of 2019’s monthly average of +175,000.
Almost Half of 2019’s Mega Project Initiations Were in the South U.S. countrywide construction starts in 2019 had a greater than normal weighting of 'mega' projects. ‘Megas’ are projects valued at $1.0 billion or more each.
Total U.S. Construction Spending Stayed Stuck at $1.3 Trillion in 2019 As the sum of its monthly not seasonally adjusted (NSA) figures, the Census Bureau has calculated that total U.S. put-in-place construction in 2019 was $1.303 trillion. The total dollar volume last year was -0.3%, or flat, compared with 2018. (2018 had been +3.3% relative to 2017.)