U.S. Construction Spending in November Highest Since April 2006
According to the latest report from the U.S. Census Bureau, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of construction spending for November 2016 was at an estimated $1,182.1 billion, a 0.9% increase from the previous month. This is the highest it’s been in over a decade, going all the way back to April 2006 when it was $1,192.8 billion.
October’s annual rate was revised down from $1,172.6 billion to $1,171.4 billion. September’s estimate was also revised down from $1,166.5 billion to $1,164.4 in the latest release.
The November estimate is 4.1% above the $1,135.5 billion from a year ago. Through November 2016, total construction spending for the year was at $1,070.9 billion, 4.4% above the same period last year. Construction spending through the first 11 months of 2015 was at 1,025.5 billion.
Private construction spending for November was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $892.8 billion. This is 1.0% higher than October’s estimate which was revised down from $885.9 billion to $884.3 billion. September’s figure was also revised back down from $887.4 billion to $883.6 billion.
Total private construction spending in November was up 4.6% from a year ago. Private nonresidential spending rose 0.9% for the month to $430.0 billion and private residential was up 1.0% for the month to $463.0 billion during November.
The biggest increases in private construction for the month were in Lodging which was up 7.0% and Religious which was up 9.8% from October.
The seasonally adjusted annual rate of public construction spending for November was estimated at $289.3 billion, just 0.8% above October’s estimate which was revised up from $286.8 billion to $287.1 billion. September’s estimate was revised up again in the latest report from $279.1 billion to $280.8 billion. November’s figure is 2.6% above the November 2015 estimate of 281.8 billion.
The largest monthly increases for public construction spending were in Office which was up 3.1% from October and Conservation and Development which rose 5.0% from the previous month.
According to ConstructConnect’s Chief Economist, Alex Carrick, “It’s encouraging to see that U.S. total construction spending picked up speed in November. The +0.9% gain month-to-month was the best since June (also +0.9%). The only other months in 2016 with comparably favorable increases all came in the first quarter, with January at +1.0%; February, +1.1%; and March, +1.6%.
November’s monthly average year-to-date improvement of +4.7% was helped along more by residential work (+5.4%) than nonresidential (+4.3%). But in the latest three months (i.e., versus the previous three months annualized), it’s been nonresidential (+4.8%) that has been speedier than residential (+3.5%).
Among type-of-structure subcategories, ‘lodging’ and ‘offices’ were the star performers in the first 11 months of 2016, with ‘commercial/retail’ also a perhaps surprising standout.
All of the average year-to-date increase in total capital spending through November 2016 was generated by the private sector (+6.4%), as the public sector (-0.1%) stood watching from the sidelines.”