editorial

New Construction Starts in August Recede 2 Percent

At a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $711.6 billion, new construction starts in August slipped 2 percent from July, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. The decline followed July’s 6 percent increase, yet still kept total construction activity 5 percent above the relatively subdued pace reported during the second quarter.

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July Construction Starts Increase 6 Percent

The value of new construction starts in July advanced 6 percent from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $728.1 billion, it was reported by Dodge Data & Analytics. Leading the way was a 26 percent jump by the nonbuilding construction sector, which reflected an improved level for public works and the start of two massive power plants, located respectively in California and New York.

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New Construction Starts in May Edge Up One Percent

At a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $651.2 billion, new construction starts in May increased a slight 1 percent from April, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. Public works construction bounced back 30 percent from its subdued April amount, helped by the May start of four large pipeline projects totaling a combined $3.0 billion. This enabled the nonbuilding construction sector (which also includes electric utilities and gas plants) to register a 23 percent gain in May, offsetting modest 4 percent declines for both nonresidential building and housing.

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June Construction Starts Climb 4 Percent

New construction starts in June grew 4 percent from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $679.9 billion, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. Nonresidential building increased 13 percent in June, strengthening after two months of lackluster activity, and the nonbuilding construction sector rose 8 percent with the help of elevated activity for electric utilities. However, residential building slipped 4 percent in June, as both sides of the housing market (single-family and multifamily) retreated.

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April Construction Starts Retreat 13 Percent

By Mark S. Kuhar

The value of new construction starts in April dropped 13 percent from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $647.8 billion, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. The decline followed three straight months of gains, which saw total construction activity rising 20 percent from the lackluster amount reported back in December. Highway and bridge construction in April fell 10 percent.

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