According to the US Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce, construction spending in August 2014 came in at US$961 billion at a seasonally adjusted annual rate. This is approximately 0.8% below the revised July 2014 estimate but 5% above the August 2013 figure. For the January – August 2014 period, US construction spending improved by 6.8% y/y.
Public construction spending in August is estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of US$275.9 billion, down 0.9% on the revised July estimate of US$278.5 billion. Compared to July, educational construction spending and highway construction spending fell by 2.9% and 0.6%, respectively.
Private construction spending was estimated at US$685 billion for August, compared to the revised July estimate of US$690.3 billion. Residential construction spending decreased by 0.1% m/m to US$351.7 billion. Non-residential construction spending fell by 1.4% y/y to US$333.3 billion.
In other news, the Government Development Bank of Puerto Rico’s Economic Activity Index (GDB-EAI) reveals that 1.07 million bags of cement were sold in August 2014. This is 22.4% lower than in the corresponding month in 2013. According to the Index, gasoline consumption and electric power generation also declined during the month, falling by 0.3% y/y and 4.1% y/y, respectively. On a more positive note, construction employment increased by 6.6% y/y, the fifth consecutive month of growth.
Edited from various sources by Louise Fordham
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