After a disappointing March, the nation’s nonresidential construction industry bounced back moderately in April, according to an analysis of a recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Nonresidential construction spending increased 0.7 percent in April, with outlays increasing to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of $552.45 billion, according to the report.
However, nonresidential construction spending is down 2.1 percent from one year ago.
Privately financed projects primarily drove spending gains in April, with private nonresidential construction spending rising 2.2 percent for the month and 0.6 percent on a year-over-year basis. Public nonresidential construction spending dipped 1.1 percent for the month and is down 5.2 percent compared to April 2012, ABC reports.
Residential construction spending slipped 0.2 percent for the month, but is up 18.3 percent from the same time last year. Total construction spending–which includes both nonresidential and residential spending–was up 0.4 percent for the month and is up 4.3 percent from April 2012.
“The dominant theme associated with today’s report on the nation’s nonresidential construction industry continues to be slow and steady,” says ABC chief economist Anirban Basu. “While weather and other factors can impact monthly performance, the industry continues to be poised for slow spending growth.”
He adds, “Nonresidential construction tends to lag the performance of the overall economy. The broader economy continues to expand at a roughly 2-percent pace and is closing in on completing four years of economic recovery. The implication is that nonresidential construction spending will also continue to recover, but only gradually.”