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ABC's Construction Economic Update covers the latest commercial and industrial construction economic news. Delivered electronically, it provides an analysis of the monthly economic indices released by the federal government, including construction spending, employment, the producer price index and the quarterly gross domestic product.  

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For media inquiries, contact Jeff Leieritz at leieritz@abc.org.

Construction Unemployment Rose in January

WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 5—The U.S. construction industry’s unemployment rate rose to 8.5 percent in January, the highest level since March of 2015, according to an analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The unemployment rate across all industries shed a tenth of a percentage point and now sits at 4.9 percent, the lowest level since February of 2008. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Spending Falls Again in December

WASHINGTON, D.C. Feb. 1—Nonresidential construction spending dipped for a second consecutive month, falling 0.4 percent on a monthly basis in December, according to analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Nonresidential construction spending totaled $681.2 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis. November’s nonresidential construction spending estimate was revised lower by 0.6 percent to $683.7 billion.  Read the rest of entry »

Tepid GDP Growth a Sign Construction Spending May Sputter; Decline Unlikely

Real gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by just 0.7 percent (seasonally adjusted annual rate) during the fourth quarter of 2015, according to an analysis of the Bureau of Economic Analysis data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). This paltry growth follows a 2 percent increase during the year’s third quarter and a 3.9 percent increase during the second quarter. For the year, GDP expanded by 2.4 percent, matching the rate of growth seen in 2014. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Continue Free Fall in December

Construction material prices fell for the sixth consecutive month in December, losing 1.2 percent on a monthly basis and 4 percent on a yearly basis according to an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics Producer Price Index released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Construction input prices have fallen 7.2 percent since peaking in August 2014, and have fallen in eleven of the previous sixteen months. Nonresidential construction input prices exhibited similar declines, falling 1.1 percent for the month and 4 percent for the year. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Employment Surges at Year’s End

WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 8- The U.S. construction industry showed robust growth at the end of 2015, adding 45,000 net new jobs in December and 128,000 during the fourth quarter according to analysis of today’s employment release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The construction industry’s nonresidential component added 16,400 net new jobs in December while the residential sector accounted for 23,100 and the heavy and civil engineering sector contributed 4,800. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Construction Spending Slips in November; Ominous Indications in Census Bureau Report

WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 4- Nonresidential construction spending dipped by 0.8 percent in November, totaling $688.1 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis, according to analysis of  U.S. Census Bureau data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). This represents the worst monthly performance since April 2015. Moreover, October’s spending estimate was revised downward from $701.8 billion to $693.7 billion and September’s estimate was revised downward from $695 billion to $691.5 billion. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Plunge in November

WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 11- Construction input prices fell for the fifth consecutive month in November according to an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Producer Price Index released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Input prices fell 0.4 percent on a monthly basis and are down 4.2 percent on a year-over-year basis. Nonresidential construction prices behaved similarly, falling 0.5 percent month-over-month and 4.6 percent year-over-year. Only two of the 11 key input prices have risen since November 2014. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Industry Leads November Jobs Report

Construction employment expanded by 46,000 net new jobs in November after adding 34,000 jobs in October (revised upward by 3,000), according to an analysis of today’s employment release from the U.S. Department of Labor provided by Associated Builders and Contractors Chief Economist Anirban Basu..  Nonresidential construction employment increased by 9,300 jobs in November after adding 19,400 jobs during the prior month (revised downward from 20,100). The residential construction sector added 32,100 positions in November after adding just 8,500 jobs in October.
Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Spending Retains Momentum in October

WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 1- Nonresidential construction spending expanded in October for the third consecutive month (September’s estimate was revised higher than August’s) according to analysis of   U.S. Census Bureau data released by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) today.  Nonresidential construction spending totaled $701.8 billion in October on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, a 1 percent increase on a monthly basis and an 11 percent increase on a yearly basis. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Fall Further in October

WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 13- The Producer Price Index for inputs to construction industries declined for a fourth consecutive month in October, according to an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The index stands at its lowest level since the first quarter of 2011 as prices for construction inputs declined 0.2 percent on a monthly basis and 4.6 percent on a year-ago basis. Nonresidential construction input prices exhibit a similar pattern, falling 0.3 percent since last month and 5.1 percent over the past twelve months. Nine of 11 key input prices are down on a year-over-year basis.
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