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By: Alex Carrick on November 16th, 2021

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October's Nonresidential Construction Starts -26% M/M, -9% Y/Y & -2% YTD

Economic News | Industry Snapshot

October Handicapped by September’s Strength

ConstructConnect announced today that October 2021's volume of construction starts, excluding residential work, was $28.8 billion (see shaded green box, bottom of Table 8 below), a decrease of -25.6% compared with September 2021's level of $38.7 billion (originally reported as $38.0 billion).

October's Nonresidential Construction Starts -26% M/M, -9% Y/Y & -2% YTD Graphic

Compared with October 2020, the latest month’s nonresidential starts were -9.2%. On a year-to-date basis, they were -2.2%. GRAND TOTAL starts in October 2021 (i.e., including residential activity) were -14.3% m/m and -9.2% y/y, but +5.8% ytd.

October's Nonresidential Construction Starts -26% M/M, -9% Y/Y & -2% YTD Graphic
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Click here to download the complete Construction Industry Snapshot Package - October 2021 PDF.

A significant drop in October starts month to month was almost assured once Intel’s two new computer chipmaking plants landed in September. Subtracting out an estimate of $8 billion, as the construction component alone for Intel’s new facilities, would then place October’s $28.8 billion in a much better light relative to an adjusted $30.7 billion for the prior month. 

As for major undertakings in the latest month, October can boast of a new basketball stadium for the L.A. Clippers, carrying a price tag of $1.2 billion. In the several years prior to 2020, stadium and arena construction to serve fans in all four of the major professional sports leagues was a source of much building activity. There will be more life to this trend (e.g., plans for a new Buffalo Bills stadium) when the pandemic is securely relegated to the sidelines.  

The single mega project included among October of last year’s Top 10 list was a steel mill for Nucor in Brandenburg, Kentucky, valued at $1.7 billion.

Three Divergent Paths

ConstructConnect’s ‘starts’ statistics through October 2021 took three clearly divergent paths. Versus results for Jan-Oct 2020, residential starts were ahead by +16.9%; engineering was approximately flat, +1.5%; and nonresidential building trailed somewhat behind, -4.5%.   

On a month-to-month basis in October, the same pattern of winners and losers was maintained with residential at +2.1%; heavy civil at -0.8%; and nonresidential building, -36.3%. The outsized drop in the latter was due to October’s comparison with a September that included mega-sized groundbreakings on two new computer chip-making plants in Arizona. 

Trailing 12-Month Starts Mildly Upbeat

Other statistics often beloved by analysts are trailing twelve-month (TTM) results and these are set out for all the various type-of-structure categories in Table 10 on page 11 of this report. Grand Total TTM starts in October on a month-to-month basis were -0.8%, compared with +1.2% in September and 0.0% in August. On a year-over-year basis in October, GT TTM starts were +2.2% versus +1.5% in September and -1.1% in August. The steady, if mild, upwards progression of GT TTM starts is encouraging. The wounds inflicted last year are healing.

Census Bureau’s PIP Numbers Supported by Residential

‘Starts’ compile the total estimated dollar value and square footage of all projects on which ground is broken in any given month. They lead, by nine months to as much as two years, put-in-place (PIP) statistics which are analogous to work-in-progress payments as the building of structures proceeds to completion.

PIP numbers cover the ‘universe’ of construction, new plus all manner of renovation activity, with residential traditionally making up two-fifths (about 40%) of the total and nonresidential, three-fifths (i.e., the bigger portion, at around 60%). Presently, though, according to the Census Bureau’s September 2021 not-seasonally-adjusted (NSA) PIP numbers for the total United States, the year-to-date mix has shifted dramatically. The residential to nonresidential relationship has become approximately half and half (i.e., 49.4%-to-50.6% respectively). The Census Bureau’s September 2021 NSA ytd PIP results are +7.1% for total; +24.5%, residential; and -5.8%, nonresidential (i.e., nonresidential buildings plus engineering).   

PIP numbers, being more spread out, have smaller peak-over-trough percent-change amplitudes than the ‘starts’ series. As an additional valuable service for clients and powered by its extensive ‘starts’ database, ConstructConnect, in partnership with Oxford Economics, a world-leader in econometric modeling, has developed put-in-place construction statistics by types of structure for U.S. states, cities, and counties, ‘actuals’ and forecasts. ConstructConnect’s PIP numbers are being released quarterly and are featured in a separate reporting system.

Construction Jobs +44,000 in October

October’s total U.S. construction employment increase of +44,000 jobs brought the year-to-date figure to +98,000. The biggest contribution to the jobs uptick in the latest month came from nonresidential sub-trades, +19,000. With a claw-back ratio of 86.5%, construction has still not recovered all the jobs it shed between February and April of last year, when shutdowns to combat COVID-19 were most stringent. Nevertheless, 86.5% is better than the 81.2% recovery ratio for all jobs in the economy.

Two sectors have managed full jobs recoveries, financial activities (with a claw-back ratio of 102.5%) and transportation and warehousing (125.9%); but it’s also true that neither had as severe jobs declines in the Spring of last year as most other sectors. The strong recent jump in transportation and warehousing employment has been in response to the critical shortages story that is dominating the news cycle. Efforts are underway to relieve the flare-up in inflation which has soared to a three-decade high of +6.2% year over year for the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  

Other corners of the economy with close ties to construction have seen the following year over year changes in employment: machinery and equipment rental and leasing, +8.9%; architectural and engineering services, +5.1%; real estate firms, +4.1%; oil and gas extraction, +3.2%; cement and concrete product manufacturing, -1.5%; and building material and supplies dealers, -2.4%. The solid increase of +5.1% y/y for employment with project design firms augurs well for eventual sitework employment resulting from the lead-lag relationship.

Graph 1: Change in Level of U.S. Construction Employment, Month to Month (M/M) −
Total & by Categories - October 2021

In 2021 so far, there has been an even split of months with increases (5) vs those with decreases (also 5). The 'Total' net figure year to date has been +98,000 jobs, led by residential general plus sub-trade contractors at +82,000.
For each month, 'net' = zero. 'Sub-trade' in BLS data is referred to as 'specialty' trade.
Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Graph 2: U.S. Employment October 2021 - % Change Y/Y
Based on Seasonally Adjusted (SA) Data

Latest (October 2021) Y/Y:
Services, +4.8%; Manufacturing, +3.1%; Construction, +2.3%. The period of exaggerated coronavirus-related swings in  employment is moderating. Construction & manufacturing are essentially tied for y/y jobs gain, but they trail services.
The latest data points are for October 2021.
Data source: Payroll Survey, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Graph 3: Y/Y Jobs Change, U.S. Total Industry & Major Subsectors − October 2021 (based on seasonally adjusted payroll data)

Oct 2021's y/y changes in employment within the hardest-hit sector, 'leisure & hospitality', were: 'hotels/motels', +23.0%; 'amusements/gambling', +18.9%; and 'restaurants & bars', +10.9%.
Data source: Payroll Survey, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (Dept of Labor).
Chart: ConstructConnect.
Graph 4: U.S. Construction Employment (SA) & Unemployment Rate (NSA)
The employment (7.498 million jobs) and unemployment rate (4.0%) metrics for the U.S. construction sector have both returned close (but not quite all the way yet) to their pre-coronavirus levels.
Current through October 2021. SA is seasonally adjusted / NSA is not seasonally adjusted.
Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Table 1: Monitoring the U.S. employment recovery ‒ October 2021

Monitoring the U.S. employment recovery ‒ October 2021 Chart
Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Pluses and Minuses Among the Type of Structure Subcategories

October’s -25.6% month-to-month (m/m) decrease in total nonresidential starts was mainly due to a big drop in the industrial subcategory, -78.0%. This was to be expected. It’s not often there’s a project comparable in size to September’s footprint for Intel. There was also a sizable slide in institutional starts m/m in September, -22.6%; but engineering stayed about even, -0.8%, and commercial achieved a small advance, +3.9%.

The -9.2% pullback in October 2021’s total nonresidential starts versus October 2020 (y/y) resulted from nearly equal percentage-change retreats by industrial, -24.7%, and institutional, -22.0%. Commercial was also down, but relatively mildly, -5.6%. Engineering was alone in managing a gain, although only a small one, +1.6%.

The -2.2% setback of total nonresidential starts year to date (Jan-Oct 2021/Jan-Oct 2020) has been caused by weakness in commercial, -7.6%, and institutional, -9.8%, as engineering has stayed steady, +1.5%, and industrial has climbed by a third, +33.8%.

There are two dominant subcategories of total nonresidential starts. When the year-to-date volumes of ‘roads/highways’ and ‘schools/colleges’ are added together, they account for nearly one-third of total nonresidential (i.e., shares of 15.2% and 17.4% respectively summing to 32.6%).

The time-frame metrics for street starts in October were encouraging: -1.0% y/y, but +3.6% m/m, and +7.3% ytd. The three key measures for school starts, however, were no cause for joy: -16.8% m/m; -25.6% y/y; and -13.9% ytd.

The next largest contributor (with an 8.6% share) to total nonresidential starts so far this year has been the ‘water/sewage’ subcategory. Like roads, its results have been mainly positive: -5.9% m/m, but +19.8% y/y and +8.1% ytd.

A combined health care subcategory, comprised of ‘hospitals/clinics,’ ‘nursing/assisted living,’ and ‘miscellaneous medical,’ had a poor showing in the latest month: -45.5% m/m and -31.8% y/y, although +1.0% ytd. ‘Hospital/clinic’ starts on their own were depressed m/m, -50.5%, and y/y, -25.1%, but they were much cheerier ytd, +25.2%. (September 2021 was rich in big hospital groundbreakings.)

Also noteworthy within institutional starts, the ‘fire/police/courthouse/prison’ subcategory has seen nothing but pluses: +8.3% m/m; +1.5% y/y; and +1.2% ytd. Delving deeper, courthouses have done best, +46.3% ytd.

Some of commercial’s most important subcategories continue to display the extreme negativity that was first brought on by the arrival of the coronavirus. On a ytd basis, ‘hotel/motel’ starts are -37.2% and ‘private office buildings,’ -29.0%. But after contracting severely over the course of several years, ‘retail/shopping’ starts are +3.0% ytd in 2021. And ‘miscellaneous commercial’ starts are +52.0% ytd. This is a subcategory that includes sports arenas. In October, ground was broken on a new home for the NBA L.A. Clippers.   

Table 2: Construction Starts in Some Additional Type of Structure Sub-Categories

  Jan-OCT 2021 % Change vs
  ($ billions) Jan-OCT 2020
     
Sports Stadiums/Convention Centers $4.725 14.5%
Transportation Terminals $4.872 122.9%
Courthouses $1.966 46.3%
Police Stations & Fire Halls $2.468 -10.8%
Prisons $1.954 -11.2%
Pre-School/Elementary $13.886 -22.4%
Junior & Senior High Schools $23.773 -5.2%
     K-12  (sum of above two categories) $37.659 -12.4%
Special & Vocational Schools $1.630 -9.3%
Colleges & Universities $12.274 -18.7%
Electric Power Infrastructure $8.287 118.0%

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

Still Frustrating Results from JOLTS

The first of the two graphs showing results from the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report makes clear there’s plenty of opportunities to find work in the construction sector. Job ‘openings,’ as both a level and a rate, have recently risen close to their pre-pandemic heights of early 2019. The early 2019 numbers were also peaks for this century.

‘Hiring,’ however, has been another story. The history of taking on staff in the construction sector is set out in the second JOLTS graph.  Recruitment, measured according to both level and rate, may have picked up a little in the last month or two, but it remains frustratingly low.

Graph 5: U.S. Construction Job Openings (from JOLTS Report)
(3-month Moving Averages placed in Latest Month)

Construction job 'openings', as both a level and a rate, have been inching towards new all-time highs, beyond their peaks of 2019. One enticement offered to increase sign-ups has been wage hikes.
*Rate is number of job openings end-of-month as % of 'construction employment plus number of job openings'.
Latest seasonally adjusted data points are for September 2021. ... JOLTS = Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.
Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Graph 6: U.S. Construction Job Hires (from JOLTS Report)
(3-month Moving Averages placed in Latest Month)

Just as it was appearing construction job hires, as a level and a rate, were set to begin climbing nicely once again, September delivered soft setbacks for both series.
*Rate is number of job openings end-of-month as % of 'construction employment plus number of job openings'.
Latest seasonally adjusted data points are for September 2021. ... JOLTS = Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.
Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Trend Graphs Thinking About Reversing Course

Many of the 12-month moving average trend graphs (Nonresidential Construction Starts Trend Graphs - October 2021) are signaling they would like to stop descending and may even be giving some thought to rising once again. Only ‘private office buildings’ and ‘schools/colleges’ seem determined to keep heading south.

Most of the other categories have flattened out or are side-stepping upwards. Best illustrating the latter are ‘roads/highways’ and ‘water/sewage.’

Annual Wage Hikes Gravitating to +5%

Tables B-3 and B-8 of the monthly Employment Situation report record average hourly and average weekly wages for industry sectors. B-3 is for all employees (i.e., including bosses) on nonfarm payrolls. B-8 is for ‘production and nonsupervisory personnel’ only (i.e., it excludes bosses). For ‘all jobs’ and construction, there are eight relevant percentage changes to consider.

From Table B-3 (including bosses), ‘all jobs’ earnings y/y in October were +4.9% hourly and +4.6% weekly. Construction workers trailed on both counts, but only by slim margins, +4.7% hourly and +4.2% weekly. From Table B-8 (leaving out bosses), the y/y ‘all jobs’ compensation gains were +5.8% hourly and +5.4% weekly. Construction workers stood a little behind hourly, +5.2%, but rode out front weekly, +5.8%.

U.S. construction’s current not seasonally adjusted (NSA) unemployment rate is a low 4.0%. It’s even tighter than the national NSA ‘all jobs’ U rate of 4.3%. (A month ago, construction’s NSA U rate was 4.5%; and a year ago, it was 6.8%.)

Graph 7: Average Hourly Earnings Y/Y - 'All Jobs' & Construction
After some wild disparities, the hourly 'all jobs' and construction worker earnings increases have moved into closer alignment. Their present year-over-year percent changes, though, are markedly higher than earlier this century.
From ‘Production Workers and Non-supervisory Personnel’ Table (B8).
The latest data points are for October 2021
Data Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)’s Employment Situation report.
Chart: ConstructConnect.
Graph 8: Average Weekly Earnings Y/Y - 'All Jobs' & Construction
In September, construction worker weekly earnings soared to +10.5% y/y. That double digit percentage gain eased in October, however, to +5.8% y/y, not much above the compensation advance for 'all jobs', +5.4% y/y.
From ‘Production Workers and Non-supervisory Personnel’ Table (B8).
The latest data points are for October 2021
Data Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)’s Employment Situation report.
Chart: ConstructConnect.

Table 3: 2021 YTD Ranking of Top 20 States by $ Volume of Nonresidential Construction Starts - ConstructConnect

    Jan-OCT 2021 % Change vs Jan-OCT 2020
       
1 Texas $40,228,526,360 -7.9%
2 California $30,256,720,799 -9.0%
3 Florida $20,491,925,229 3.8%
4 New York $17,399,931,465 10.6%
5 Arizona $14,482,891,874 104.1%
6 Ohio $12,295,856,831 -6.9%
7 North Carolina $11,788,798,632 28.1%
8 Pennsylvania $11,687,198,633 25.1%
9 Illinois $10,899,118,345 -16.5%
10 Massachusetts $9,896,095,020 22.0%
11 Georgia $9,737,484,234 -13.5%
12 Minnesota $8,762,405,650 13.6%
13 Virginia $8,401,308,066 -13.4%
14 Tennessee $8,344,268,197 28.9%
15 Michigan $7,929,113,916 12.4%
16 Missouri $7,513,217,867 -12.9%
17 Washington $7,069,107,465 -42.5%
18 Indiana $6,771,752,794 -7.2%
19 Wisconsin $6,205,542,826 -25.1%
20 Colorado $6,156,158,163 -5.6%

Figures are comprised of non-res building & engineering (residential is omitted).

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

Table 4: 2021 YTD Ranking of Top 20 States by $ Volume of Nonresidential Building Construction Starts - ConstructConnect

    Jan-OCT 2021 % Change vs Jan-OCT 2020
       
1 Texas $22,993,422,390 -19.7%
2 California $18,136,674,885 2.8%
3 Arizona $13,323,970,706 149.4%
4 Florida $13,164,430,369 1.4%
5 New York $10,664,370,708 -3.3%
6 North Carolina $8,888,843,016 23.0%
7 Pennsylvania $7,969,436,701 52.1%
8 Ohio $7,808,867,665 -11.6%
9 Georgia $6,440,815,133 -16.5%
10 Tennessee $6,181,139,600 31.8%
11 Virginia $5,746,440,017 -6.4%
12 Illinois $5,283,687,104 -23.7%
13 Missouri $5,179,686,233 -21.1%
14 Massachusetts $4,747,079,684 -18.9%
15 Washington $4,416,655,178 -20.3%
16 Alabama $4,069,306,376 35.7%
17 Colorado $3,991,100,389 -10.0%
18 Maryland $3,866,613,369 -16.0%
19 Michigan $3,796,143,029 -4.7%
20 Indiana $3,752,666,600 -14.0%

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

Table 5: 2021 YTD Ranking of Top 20 States by $ Volume of Heavy/Engineering Civil Construction Starts - ConstructConnect

    Jan-OCT 2021 % Change vs Jan-OCT 2020
       
1 Texas $17,235,103,970 14.5%
2 California $12,120,045,914 -22.4%
3 Florida $7,327,494,860 8.4%
4 New York $6,735,560,757 43.1%
5 Minnesota $6,115,417,261 52.0%
6 Illinois $5,615,431,241 -8.3%
7 Massachusetts $5,149,015,336 128.3%
8 Ohio $4,486,989,166 2.4%
9 Michigan $4,132,970,887 34.4%
10 Pennsylvania $3,717,761,932 -9.4%
11 Georgia $3,296,669,101 -6.9%
12 Wisconsin $3,220,401,878 7.9%
13 Indiana $3,019,086,194 3.0%
14 North Carolina $2,899,955,616 46.6%
15 New Jersey $2,895,682,377 -1.6%
16 Virginia $2,654,868,049 -25.5%
17 Washington $2,652,452,287 -60.6%
18 Missouri $2,333,531,634 13.3%
19 Oklahoma $2,240,531,664 20.3%
20 Iowa $2,187,960,437 -9.3%

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

Bid Prices Respond to Input Cost Pressures

October’s y/y results for three building-related BLS Producer Price Index (PPI) series were as follows: ‘construction materials special index,’ +30.6% (a small increase from September’s +28.8%); ‘inputs to new construction index, excluding capital investment, labor, and imports,’ +18.2% (again, a small step up from the previous month’s figure, +17.2%) and ‘final demand construction,’ designed to capture bid prices, +12.3% (a more than doubling of September’s +5.2%). Bid prices are finally being adjusted to better cover sharp input expenditure hikes.

Concerning the cost of some major construction material inputs, as revealed in the Producer Price Index (PPI) data set published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), asphalt in October was +68.7% year over year; hot rolled steel bars, plates, and structural shapes, +60.0%; aluminum sheet and strip, +40.7%; copper wire and cable, +26.3%; gypsum products, +25.1%; cement, +4.9%; ready-mix concrete, +4.3%; and softwood lumber, -19.5%.

The value of construction starts each month is derived from ConstructConnect’s database of all active construction projects in the U.S. Missing project values are estimated with the help of RSMeans’ building cost models. ConstructConnect’s nonresidential construction starts series, because it is comprised of total-value estimates for individual projects, some of which are super-large, has a history of being more volatile than many other leading indicators for the economy. 

October 2021’s ‘Grand Total’ Starts +5.8% YTD

From Table 8 below, ConstructConnect’s total residential starts in October were +2.1% m/m, -9.3% y/y, and +16.9% ytd. Multi-family starts in October were +9.6% m/m, -29.8% y/y, and +5.2% ytd. Single-family starts were +0.3% m/m, -2.0% y/y, and +21.4% ytd. Year to date, the single-family market is considerably outpacing the multi-family (apartment/condo) side.

Including home building with all nonresidential categories, Grand Total starts in October 2021 were -14.3% m/m and -9.2% y/y, but +5.8% ytd.

ConstructConnect adopts a research-assigned ‘start’ date. In concept, a ‘start’ is equivalent to ground being broken for a project to proceed. If work is abandoned or rebid, the ‘start’ date is revised to reflect the new information.


Expansion Index Monitors Construction Prospects 

The economy may be in recovery mode, but nonresidential work is usually a lagging player. Companies are hesitant to undertake capital spending until their personnel needs are rapidly expanding and their office square footage or plant footprints are straining capacity. Also, it helps if profits are abundant. (Today’s greater tendency to work from home has made office occupancy much more difficult to assess.)

Each month, ConstructConnect publishes information on upcoming construction projects at its Expansion Index. 

The Expansion Index, for hundreds of cities in the U.S. and Canada, calculates the ratio, based on dollar volume, of projects in the planning stage, at present, divided by the comparable figure a year ago. The ratio moves above 1.0 when there is currently a larger dollar volume of construction ‘prospects’ than there was last year at the same time. The ratio sinks below 1.0 when the opposite is the case. The results are set out in interactive maps for both countries.


Click here to download the Construction Industry Snapshot Package - October 2021 PDF.

Click here for the Top 10 Project Starts in the U.S. - October 2021.

Click here for the Nonresidential Construction Starts Trend Graphs - October 2021.

TABLE 6: VALUE OF UNITED STATES NONRESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION STARTS
OCTOBER 2021 – CONSTRUCTCONNECT

    % Change   % Change   % Change
  Jan-OCT 21 Jan-OCT 21 vs    OCT 21 vs   OCT 21 vs
  ($ billions) Jan-OCT 20   OCT 20   SEPT 21
             
Hotel/Motel 5.631 -37.2%   -20.7%   -21.7%
Retail 10.956 3.0%   -40.1%   -33.8%
Parking Garage 1.489 -3.4%   10.3%   83.8%
Amusement 5.634 2.5%   -36.5%   40.9%
Private Office  14.491 -29.0%   -79.4%   -76.4%
Government Office 10.193 11.1%   21.8%   -7.0%
Laboratory 1.941 2.6%   -48.5%   -18.4%
Warehouse 20.170 -9.4%   -38.4%   -30.3%
Miscellaneous Commercial* 9.598 52.0%   755.9%   467.1%
COMMERCIAL (big subset) 80.102 -7.6%   -5.6%   3.9%
             
INDUSTRIAL (Manufacturing) 26.658 33.8%   -24.7%   -78.0%
             
Religious 0.799 -38.6%   -73.6%   -31.4%
Hospital/Clinic 13.608 25.2%   -25.1%   -50.5%
Nursing/Assisted Living 4.959 -21.2%   -21.9%   10.1%
Library/Museum 2.086 -37.2%   -21.8%   -49.6%
Police/Courthouse/Prison 6.388 1.2%   1.5%   8.3%
Military 7.467 -3.6%   9.9%   20.0%
School/College 51.563 -13.9%   -25.6%   -16.8%
Miscellaneous Medical 5.572 -17.1%   -53.6%   -64.5%
INSTITUTIONAL 92.443 -9.8%   -22.0%   -22.6%
             
Miscellaneous Nonresidential 5.090 6.0%   4.6%   40.8%
NONRESIDENTIAL BUILDING 204.292 -4.5%   -15.2%   -36.3%
             
Airport 4.725 -9.7%   -4.3%   -16.3%
Road/Highway 58.959 7.3%   -1.0%   3.6%
Bridge 15.439 -19.1%   22.2%   6.4%
Dam/Marine 6.139 -14.0%   -28.3%   -2.7%
Water/Sewage 29.116 8.1%   19.8%   -5.9%
Miscellaneous Civil (power, pipelines, etc.) 20.661 4.8%   -5.7%   -5.3%
HEAVY ENGINEERING (Civil) 135.039 1.5%   1.6%   -0.8%
             
TOTAL NONRESIDENTIAL 339.332 -2.2%   -9.2%   -25.6%

*Includes transportation terminals and sports arenas.

Source: ConstructConnect Research Group and ConstructConnect.
Table: ConstructConnect.

TABLE 7: VALUE OF UNITED STATES CONSTRUCTION STARTS
CONSTRUCTCONNECT INSIGHT VERSION – OCTOBER 2021
Arranged to match the alphabetical category drop-down menus in INSIGHT

        % Change     % Change % Change
      Jan-Oct 21 Jan-Oct 21 vs     Oct 21 vs Oct 21 vs
      ($ billions) Jan-Oct 20     Sept 20 Sept 21
                 
Summary              
CIVIL     135.039 1.5%     1.6% -0.8%
NONRESIDENTIAL BUILDING 204.292 -4.5%     -15.2% -36.3%
RESIDENTIAL   291.256 16.9%     -9.3% 2.1%
GRAND TOTAL   630.588 5.8%     -9.2% -14.3%
                 
Verticals              
    Airport 4.725 -9.7%     -4.3% -16.3%
    All Other Civil 12.374 -22.2%     -5.9% -22.4%
    Bridges 15.439 -19.1%     22.2% 6.4%
    Dams / Canals / Marine Work 6.139 -14.0%     -28.3% -2.7%
    Power Infrastructure 8.287 118.0%     -5.4% 42.9%
    Roads 58.959 7.3%     -1.0% 3.6%
    Water and Sewage Treatment 29.116 8.1%     19.8% -5.9%
CIVIL     135.039 1.5%     1.6% -0.8%
    Offices (private) 14.491 -29.0%     -79.4% -76.4%
    Parking Garages 1.489 -3.4%     10.3% 83.8%
    Transportation Terminals 4.872 122.9%     1048.9% 350.0%
  Commercial (small subset) 20.852 -13.6%     4.5% 8.1%
    Amusement 5.634 2.5%     -36.5% 40.9%
    Libraries / Museums 2.086 -37.2%     -21.8% -49.6%
    Religious 0.799 -38.6%     -73.6% -31.4%
    Sports Arenas / Convention Centers 4.725 14.5%     573.8% 683.0%
  Community 13.245 -7.1%     70.9% 167.3%
    College / University 12.274 -18.7%     -46.3% -24.8%
    Elementary / Pre School 13.886 -22.4%     -50.6% -49.0%
    Jr / Sr High School 23.773 -5.2%     8.3% 11.2%
    Special / Vocational 1.630 -9.3%     -5.6% -40.5%
  Educational 51.563 -13.9%     -25.6% -16.8%
    Courthouses 1.966 46.3%     281.3% 40.5%
    Fire and Police Stations 2.468 -10.8%     -27.0% -9.8%
    Government Offices 10.193 11.1%     21.8% -7.0%
    Prisons 1.954 -11.2%     -11.8% 13.7%
  Government 16.581 7.1%     12.3% -1.1%
    Industrial Labs / Labs / School Labs 1.941 2.6%     -48.5% -18.4%
    Manufacturing 26.658 33.8%     -24.7% -78.0%
    Warehouses 20.170 -9.4%     -38.4% -30.3%
  Industrial 48.768 10.7%     -31.5% -69.3%
    Hospitals / Clinics 13.608 25.2%     -25.1% -50.5%
    Medical Misc. 5.572 -17.1%     -53.6% -64.5%
    Nursing Homes 4.959 -21.2%     -21.9% 10.1%
  Medical   24.139 1.0%     -31.8% -45.8%
  Military   7.467 -3.6%     9.9% 20.0%
    Hotels 5.631 -37.2%     -20.7% -21.7%
    Retail Misc. 5.090 6.0%     4.6% 40.8%
    Shopping 10.956 3.0%     -40.1% -33.8%
  Retail   21.677 -11.2%     -24.1% -15.0%
NONRESIDENTIAL BUILDING 204.292 -4.5%     -15.2% -36.3%
    Multi-Family 72.652 5.2%     -29.8% 9.6%
    Single-Family 218.604 21.4%     -2.0% 0.3%
RESIDENTIAL   291.256 16.9%     -9.3% 2.1%
NONRESIDENTIAL 339.332 -2.2%     -9.2% -25.6%
GRAND TOTAL   630.588 5.8%     -9.2% -14.3%

Table 2 conforms to the type-of-structure ordering adopted by many firms and organizations in the industry. Specifically, it breaks nonresidential building into ICI work (i.e., industrial, commercial, and institutional), since each has its own set of economic and demographic drivers. Table 3 presents an alternative, perhaps more user-friendly and intuitive type-of-structure ordering that matches how the data appears in ConstructConnect Insight.

Source: ConstructConnect.
Table: ConstructConnect.

TABLE 8: VALUE OF UNITED STATES NATIONAL CONSTRUCTION STARTS – October 2021 – CONSTRUCTCONNECT
Billions of current $s, not seasonally adjusted (NSA)

  Latest month actuals  Moving averages (placed in end month) Year to Date. 
        3-months 12-months JAN-OCT JAN-OCT
  AUG 21 SEP 21 OCT 21 AUG 21 SEP 21 OCT 21 AUG 21 SEP 21 OCT 21 2020 2021
                       
Single Family 22.489 21.578 21.644 24.092 22.736 21.904 21.486 21.527 21.491 180.009 218.604
   month-over-month % change -6.8% -4.1% 0.3% -0.7% -5.6% -3.7% 0.8% 0.2% -0.2%    
   year-over-year % change 9.6% 2.3% -2.0% 20.3% 9.4% 3.2% 27.5% 25.4% 22.3% 7.2% 21.4%
Apartment 8.026 5.079 5.567 7.506 6.598 6.224 7.486 7.342 7.145 69.042 72.652
   month-over-month % change 20.0% -36.7% 9.6% 0.2% -12.1% -5.7% 1.6% -1.9% -2.7%    
   year-over-year % change 21.4% -25.4% -29.8% 5.9% -3.7% -12.6% -3.6% -2.5% -1.5% -14.8% 5.2%
TOTAL RESIDENTIAL 30.516 26.658 27.211 31.598 29.333 28.128 28.973 28.869 28.635 249.051 291.256
   month-over-month % change -1.0% -12.6% 2.1% -0.5% -7.2% -4.1% 1.0% -0.4% -0.8%    
   year-over-year % change 12.4% -4.5% -9.3% 16.6% 6.2% -0.8% 17.7% 16.9% 15.4% 0.0% 16.9%
Hotel/Motel 0.398 0.617 0.483 0.618 0.570 0.499 0.577 0.582 0.571 8.973 5.631
   month-over-month % change -42.8% 55.0% -21.7% -11.6% -7.8% -12.4% -2.8% 0.8% -1.8%    
   year-over-year % change -33.1% 9.6% -20.7% -1.8% -11.5% -15.2% -58.6% -54.9% -50.5% -51.9% -37.2%
Retail 1.550 1.043 0.690 1.297 1.132 1.095 1.087 1.087 1.049 10.640 10.956
   month-over-month % change 92.9% -32.7% -33.8% 9.4% -12.7% -3.3% 3.2% 0.0% -3.5%    
   year-over-year % change 35.4% 0.5% -40.1% 21.0% 5.4% -1.6% 1.0% 3.7% -1.9% -25.7% 3.0%
Parking Garages 0.145 0.081 0.149 0.150 0.134 0.125 0.144 0.139 0.141 1.541 1.489
   month-over-month % change -18.4% -44.2% 83.8% 4.1% -10.1% -7.2% -2.2% -2.9% 0.8%    
   year-over-year % change -21.3% -38.0% 10.3% 10.7% -2.6% -16.7% -15.7% -19.5% -13.3% -44.2% -3.4%
Amusement 0.592 0.316 0.446 0.818 0.687 0.451 0.579 0.558 0.536 5.497 5.634
   month-over-month % change -48.7% -46.6% 40.9% 2.2% -15.9% -34.3% 3.4% -3.7% -3.8%    
   year-over-year % change 62.6% -44.7% -36.5% 90.9% 56.8% -17.4% 4.1% -0.3% -2.1% -15.7% 2.5%
Office 2.945 1.426 0.337 1.934 2.091 1.569 1.775 1.773 1.665 20.408 14.491
   month-over-month % change 55.0% -51.6% -76.4% 48.7% 8.1% -24.9% -3.3% -0.1% -6.1%    
   year-over-year % change -20.0% -1.5% -79.4% -13.5% -2.7% -30.4% -32.2% -28.2% -27.8% -30.4% -29.0%
Governmental Offices 1.244 0.938 0.873 1.340 1.394 1.018 1.026 0.961 0.974 9.171 10.193
   month-over-month % change -37.8% -24.6% -7.0% 6.9% 4.0% -26.9% 2.9% -6.4% 1.4%    
   year-over-year % change 39.4% -45.6% 21.8% 52.0% 20.7% -8.3% 16.1% 1.1% 6.0% -7.3% 11.1%
Laboratories 0.258 0.151 0.123 0.270 0.260 0.177 0.216 0.210 0.200 1.892 1.941
   month-over-month % change -30.4% -41.3% -18.4% 17.5% -4.0% -31.7% 5.5% -3.1% -4.6%    
   year-over-year % change 111.4% -34.9% -48.5% 65.4% 56.4% -10.4% 11.3% 12.3% 0.7% -1.7% 2.6%
Warehouse 1.961 2.164 1.508 1.899 1.931 1.878 2.049 2.089 2.011 22.254 20.170
   month-over-month % change 17.5% 10.4% -30.3% -3.0% 1.7% -2.8% -1.6% 2.0% -3.7%    
   year-over-year % change -16.7% 29.1% -38.4% -18.2% -1.0% -13.0% -3.6% -1.5% -8.7% 21.1% -9.4%
Misc Commercial 0.735 0.516 2.925 1.220 0.518 1.392 0.641 0.632 0.847 6.313 9.598
   month-over-month % change 142.1% -29.9% 467.1% 8.4% -57.5% 168.6% 0.2% -1.4% 34.1%    
   year-over-year % change 1.7% -17.3% 755.9% 65.0% -32.3% 147.4% -36.0% -20.3% 15.9% -65.2% 52.0%
TOTAL COMMERCIAL 9.829 7.253 7.534 9.546 8.718 8.205 8.094 8.031 7.993 86.689 80.102
   month-over-month % change 8.3% -26.2% 3.9% 9.8% -8.7% -5.9% -0.2% -0.8% -0.5%    
   year-over-year % change -2.3% -9.4% -5.6% 10.9% 2.8% -5.5% -19.2% -16.3% -14.0% -27.7% -7.6%
TOTAL INDUSTRIAL  (Manufacturing) 1.042 10.649 2.347 1.512 4.664 4.679 1.715 2.422 2.358 19.919 26.658
   month-over-month % change -54.7% 921.6% -78.0% -19.4% 208.5% 0.3% -10.7% 41.2% -2.7%    
   year-over-year % change -70.2% 392.4% -24.7% -16.5% 106.0% 59.9% -10.5% 20.1% 15.9% -61.2% 33.8%
Religious 0.153 0.049 0.034 0.095 0.083 0.079 0.108 0.101 0.093 1.301 0.799
   month-over-month % change 233.3% -67.8% -31.4% 7.1% -12.2% -4.9% 3.7% -6.2% -7.8%    
   year-over-year % change 42.9% -62.1% -73.6% -12.1% -24.1% -35.3% -19.7% -24.1% -31.3% -16.5% -38.6%
Hosptials/Clinics 0.815 1.840 0.910 0.999 1.217 1.188 1.291 1.366 1.341 10.873 13.608
   month-over-month % change -18.2% 125.7% -50.5% 8.6% 21.9% -2.4% -2.5% 5.8% -1.9%    
   year-over-year % change -32.7% 95.3% -25.1% -11.7% 10.8% 5.8% -11.4% -2.6% 2.9% -36.2% 25.2%
Nursing/Assisted Living 0.498 0.439 0.484 0.563 0.427 0.473 0.549 0.524 0.513 6.294 4.959
   month-over-month % change 45.1% -11.7% 10.1% -2.8% -24.2% 11.0% -4.3% -4.6% -2.2%    
   year-over-year % change -37.1% -40.7% -21.9% -6.5% -33.6% -34.0% -18.5% -19.1% -17.6% -25.3% -21.2%
Libraries/Museums 0.189 0.201 0.101 0.242 0.243 0.164 0.208 0.216 0.214 3.325 2.086
   month-over-month % change -44.5% 6.7% -49.6% -16.4% 0.4% -32.7% -1.9% 4.2% -1.1%    
   year-over-year % change -20.5% 105.9% -21.8% -8.2% 29.3% 5.7% -47.0% -39.5% -33.3% -6.2% -37.2%
Police/Courthouse/Prison 0.597 0.588 0.637 0.730 0.634 0.607 0.684 0.679 0.680 6.311 6.388
   month-over-month % change -16.9% -1.4% 8.3% 3.8% -13.2% -4.3% -4.7% -0.7% 0.1%    
   year-over-year % change -40.4% -8.9% 1.5% 3.6% -15.4% -19.9% 3.9% 8.1% 10.1% 8.1% 1.2%
Military 0.620 0.895 1.074 0.810 0.694 0.863 0.741 0.736 0.744 7.742 7.467
   month-over-month % change 9.6% 44.2% 20.0% -4.2% -14.3% 24.4% -0.1% -0.7% 1.1%    
   year-over-year % change -1.7% -6.2% 9.9% 29.2% -4.4% 1.1% 5.5% 2.2% 3.5% 86.0% -3.6%
Schools/Colleges 5.992 3.837 3.193 6.273 4.953 4.341 5.052 5.029 4.938 59.874 51.563
   month-over-month % change 19.1% -36.0% -16.8% -2.8% -21.0% -12.4% 0.3% -0.5% -1.8%    
   year-over-year % change 3.3% -6.8% -25.6% -13.3% -8.4% -8.3% -14.0% -13.9% -14.9% -9.4% -13.9%
Misc Government 0.538 0.844 0.300 0.602 0.628 0.561 0.592 0.617 0.589 6.722 5.572
   month-over-month % change 7.3% 56.9% -64.5% 4.9% 4.3% -10.7% -0.7% 4.3% -4.7%    
   year-over-year % change -8.3% 57.2% -53.6% -3.2% -2.6% -5.0% -15.8% -10.4% -11.7% -16.7% -17.1%
TOTAL INSTITUTIONAL 9.402 8.694 6.732 10.314 8.879 8.276 9.225 9.269 9.111 102.440 92.443
   month-over-month % change 10.1% -7.5% -22.6% -1.3% -13.9% -6.8% -0.9% 0.5% -1.7%    
   year-over-year % change -9.3% 6.5% -22.0% -8.7% -7.2% -8.6% -12.9% -11.0% -10.6% -10.7% -9.8%
Misc Non Residential 0.404 0.425 0.599 0.474 0.461 0.476 0.509 0.505 0.507 4.801 5.090
   month-over-month % change -27.0% 5.3% 40.8% -15.3% -2.8% 3.3% -1.5% -0.8% 0.4%    
   year-over-year % change -18.6% -10.1% 4.6% 0.1% 2.0% -7.4% -9.6% -8.6% -0.9% -24.2% 6.0%
TOTAL NONRES BUILDING 20.677 27.021 17.212 21.846 22.722 21.637 19.542 20.227 19.969 213.850 204.292
   month-over-month % change 1.0% 30.7% -36.3% 1.2% 4.0% -4.8% -1.6% 3.5% -1.3%    
   year-over-year % change -15.3% 43.6% -15.2% -1.5% 9.4% 2.2% -15.4% -10.4% -9.3% -26.8% -4.5%
Airports 0.636 0.527 0.441 0.694 0.574 0.535 0.476 0.462 0.460 5.232 4.725
   month-over-month % change 14.0% -17.1% -16.3% -5.4% -17.3% -6.8% -1.5% -2.9% -0.4%    
   year-over-year % change -11.9% -24.1% -4.3% -9.4% -18.1% -14.6% -11.0% -15.0% -8.2% -20.8% -9.7%
Roads/Highways 6.164 4.879 5.056 7.025 6.386 5.366 5.569 5.642 5.638 54.962 58.959
   month-over-month % change -24.0% -20.8% 3.6% -6.6% -9.1% -16.0% 1.4% 1.3% -0.1%    
   year-over-year % change 18.3% 21.8% -1.0% 15.6% 26.6% 12.4% 4.3% 7.2% 6.9% -3.5% 7.3%
Bridges 1.261 1.235 1.314 1.432 1.328 1.270 1.551 1.573 1.593 19.083 15.439
   month-over-month % change -15.3% -2.1% 6.4% -8.5% -7.2% -4.4% 0.7% 1.5% 1.3%    
   year-over-year % change 10.7% 28.2% 22.2% -31.0% -6.1% 19.9% -27.5% -20.9% -15.5% -28.4% -19.1%
Dams/Marine 0.643 0.925 0.899 0.624 0.713 0.822 0.592 0.637 0.607 7.137 6.139
   month-over-month % change 12.7% 43.8% -2.7% 10.0% 14.3% 15.4% -2.2% 7.5% -4.6%    
   year-over-year % change -20.3% 134.7% -28.3% -7.4% 23.0% 0.5% -16.6% -8.7% -15.3% 0.7% -14.0%
Water/Sewage 2.818 2.850 2.682 3.179 3.042 2.783 2.775 2.750 2.787 26.924 29.116
   month-over-month % change -18.6% 1.1% -5.9% -8.3% -4.3% -8.5% 0.4% -0.9% 1.3%    
   year-over-year % change 5.3% -9.7% 19.8% 5.7% 4.6% 3.5% 3.0% 0.5% 2.5% 3.9% 8.1%
Misc Civil 1.681 1.303 1.233 2.504 2.373 1.405 1.948 1.979 1.973 19.715 20.661
   month-over-month % change -59.4% -22.5% -5.3% 7.5% -5.2% -40.8% -2.1% 1.6% -0.3%    
   year-over-year % change -22.9% 39.1% -5.7% 11.3% 25.6% -4.7% -35.3% -27.8% -17.3% -47.1% 4.8%
TOTAL ENGINEERING 13.201 11.718 11.626 15.457 14.416 12.182 12.911 13.042 13.057 133.052 135.039
   month-over-month % change -28.0% -11.2% -0.8% -4.5% -6.7% -15.5% 0.3% 1.0% 0.1%    
   year-over-year % change 3.7% 15.5% 1.6% 4.1% 15.0% 6.5% -10.5% -6.6% -3.1% -17.1% 1.5%
GRAND TOTAL 64.394 65.396 56.048 68.900 66.472 61.946 61.426 62.137 61.661 595.953 630.588
   month-over-month % change -7.5% 1.6% -14.3% -0.9% -3.5% -6.8% 0.0% 1.2% -0.8%    
   year-over-year % change 0.2% 15.0% -9.2% 7.4% 9.1% 1.6% -1.1% 1.5% 2.2% -15.1% 5.8%
NONRES BLDG + ENGINEERING 33.878 38.739 28.837 37.303 37.138 33.818 32.454 33.269 33.026 346.902 339.332
   month-over-month % change -12.7% 14.3% -25.6% -1.2% -0.4% -8.9% -0.8% 2.5% -0.7%    
   year-over-year % change -8.8% 33.8% -9.2% 0.7% 11.5% 3.7% -13.5% -9.0% -7.0% -23.4% -2.2%

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

TABLE 9: U.S. YEAR-TO-DATE REGIONAL STARTS,
NONRESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION* — CONSTRUCTCONNECT

  JAN-OCT 2020   JAN-OCT 2021   % Change
           
Connecticut $3,122,006,340   $2,406,706,216   -22.9%
Maine $1,511,399,977   $2,750,998,643   82.0%
Massachusetts $8,111,317,448   $9,896,095,020   22.0%
New Hampshire $952,695,510   $1,229,033,007   29.0%
Rhode Island $669,658,311   $847,490,711   26.6%
Vermont $496,036,586   $331,917,847   -33.1%
Total New England $14,863,114,172   $17,462,241,444   17.5%
New Jersey $6,467,066,577   $5,761,306,283   -10.9%
New York $15,739,414,855   $17,399,931,465   10.6%
Pennsylvania $9,339,646,725   $11,687,198,633   25.1%
Total Middle Atlantic $31,546,128,157   $34,848,436,381   10.5%
TOTAL NORTHEAST $46,409,242,329   $52,310,677,825   12.7%
Illinois $13,053,616,243   $10,899,118,345   -16.5%
Indiana $7,294,248,959   $6,771,752,794   -7.2%
Michigan $7,057,470,408   $7,929,113,916   12.4%
Ohio $13,211,176,610   $12,295,856,831   -6.9%
Wisconsin $8,287,919,942   $6,205,542,826   -25.1%
Total East North Central $48,904,432,162   $44,101,384,712   -9.8%
Iowa $4,635,160,624   $4,694,651,148   1.3%
Kansas $4,442,350,032   $3,195,371,526   -28.1%
Minnesota $7,710,507,929   $8,762,405,650   13.6%
Missouri $8,626,396,671   $7,513,217,867   -12.9%
Nebraska $3,800,489,409   $3,281,633,583   -13.7%
North Dakota $2,182,888,848   $2,009,304,284   -8.0%
South Dakota $1,063,520,164   $1,469,304,052   38.2%
Total West North Central $32,461,313,677   $30,925,888,110   -4.7%
TOTAL MIDWEST $81,365,745,839   $75,027,272,822   -7.8%
Delaware $1,419,270,081   $928,856,016   -34.6%
District of Columbia $749,442,488   $808,354,414   7.9%
Florida $19,738,191,294   $20,491,925,229   3.8%
Georgia $11,256,814,014   $9,737,484,234   -13.5%
Maryland $6,002,079,400   $4,915,214,198   -18.1%
North Carolina $9,204,247,095   $11,788,798,632   28.1%
South Carolina $4,699,497,687   $4,213,318,945   -10.3%
Virginia $9,702,182,397   $8,401,308,066   -13.4%
West Virginia $2,263,482,208   $1,027,712,333   -54.6%
Total South Atlantic $65,035,206,664   $62,312,972,067   -4.2%
Alabama $4,399,312,992   $5,686,169,168   29.3%
Kentucky $4,771,467,261   $3,449,983,246   -27.7%
Mississippi $2,593,766,306   $1,927,098,984   -25.7%
Tennessee $6,473,648,696   $8,344,268,197   28.9%
Total East South Central $18,238,195,255   $19,407,519,595   6.4%
Arkansas $3,932,053,888   $2,575,062,353   -34.5%
Louisiana $4,175,171,576   $5,856,099,010   40.3%
Oklahoma $3,740,826,066   $3,791,522,281   1.4%
Texas $43,698,207,873   $40,228,526,360   -7.9%
Total West South Central $55,546,259,403   $52,451,210,004   -5.6%
TOTAL SOUTH $138,819,661,322   $134,171,701,666   -3.3%
Arizona $7,095,283,822   $14,482,891,874   104.1%
Colorado $6,522,435,472   $6,156,158,163   -5.6%
Idaho $1,275,925,299   $1,040,640,914   -18.4%
Montana $1,429,458,527   $1,023,961,053   -28.4%
Nevada $3,180,082,046   $3,342,287,609   5.1%
New Mexico $1,787,866,001   $1,607,946,240   -10.1%
Utah $5,788,098,214   $4,292,111,798   -25.8%
Wyoming $825,522,580   $926,495,217   12.2%
Total Mountain $27,904,671,961   $32,872,492,868   17.8%
Alaska $1,313,005,101   $1,175,848,027   -10.4%
California $33,261,361,093   $30,256,720,799   -9.0%
Hawaii $1,751,880,879   $1,830,391,355   4.5%
Oregon $3,791,867,306   $4,617,293,358   21.8%
Washington $12,284,860,201   $7,069,107,465   -42.5%
Total Pacific $52,402,974,580   $44,949,361,004   -14.2%
TOTAL WEST $80,307,646,541   $77,821,853,872   -3.1%
TOTAL U.S. $346,902,296,031   $339,331,506,185   -2.2%

*Figures above are comprised of nonres building and engineering (i.e., residential is omitted).

Data Source and Table: ConstructConnect.

About Alex Carrick

Alex Carrick is Chief Economist for ConstructConnect. He has delivered presentations throughout North America on the U.S., Canadian and world construction outlooks. Mr. Carrick has been with the company since 1985.