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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.

Nonresidential Construction Spending Falters in August

Nonresidential construction spending slipped in August, according to an Oct. 1 release from the U.S. Census Bureau. Nonresidential construction spending shrank 1.2 percent on a monthly basis in August, but has still managed to expand 6 percent on a year-over-year basis. Spending for the month totaled $603.7 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis. The government also revised the July spending figure down from $617.8 billion to $611.3 billion.
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No Change for Construction Materials Prices in August

Construction materials prices were unchanged in August but are 1.7 percent higher than this time last year, according to a Sept. 16 producer price index (PPI) release by the Department of Labor. Inputs to nonresidential construction, which also remained unchanged in August, are 1 percent higher than in August of 2013. 
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Nonresidential Construction Employment Retains Momentum in August

The U.S. construction industry added 20,000 jobs in August, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Sept. 5 and July’s estimate was revised upward from 22,000 to 31,000 net new jobs. Nonresidential construction added 5,500 jobs in August, which could be considered a bit soft, but the segment added 15,200 jobs in July (revised upward from 6,600). 
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Nonresidential Construction Spending Rebounds in July

Nonresidential construction spending expanded strongly in July, growing 2.5 percent on a monthly basis and rising a robust 8.6 percent on a year-over-year basis according to a Sept. 2 release from the U.S. Census Bureau. Spending for the month totaled $617.8 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis. The government also revised upward a somewhat disappointing June nonresidential construction spending estimate from $589 billion to $603 billion and the estimate for May from $606 billion to $611 billion.
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Construction Materials Prices Flat in July

Overall, construction materials prices inched higher in July and are up 2 percent year over year, according to the Aug. 15 producer price index (PPI) release by the Department of Labor. Nonresidential construction materials prices were flat for the month and are just 1.4 percent higher than at the same time one year ago. 
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Nonresidential Construction Spending Growth Falters in June

Nonresidential construction spending fell in June after posting significant growth during the prior two months, according to the Aug. 1 release from the U.S. Census Bureau. Nonresidential construction spending fell 2.8 percent on a monthly basis in June, but has risen 4.6 percent on a year-over-year basis. Spending for the month totaled $588.8 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis, while the government revised the estimate for nonresidential construction spending in May from $596.2 billion to $605.6 billion.
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Nonresidential Construction Employment Regains Momentum in July

The U.S. construction industry added 22,000 jobs in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Aug. 1 preliminary estimate. June’s report was also upwardly revised to show a gain of 10,000 jobs in the industry. Nonresidential construction added 6,600 jobs in July, with heavy and civil engineering adding 2,500 of those jobs. This represents a significant improvement from June when the nonresidential construction industry added just 100 jobs. 
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Nonresidential Fixed Investment Expands 5.5 Percent During Robust Second Quarter

Nonresidential fixed investment expanded 5.5 percent and residential fixed investment expanded 7.5 percent during the second quarter of 2014 according to a July 30 release by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Overall, real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 4 percent (seasonally adjusted annual rate) during the second quarter of 2014 following a 2.1 percent decrease (revised from -2.9 percent) in the first quarter.  
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Construction Materials Prices Inch Higher in June

Overall construction materials prices increased by 0.1 percent in June and are up 1.9 percent year over year, according to the July 16 producer price index release by the U.S. Department of Labor. Nonresidential construction materials prices also expanded 0.1 percent for the month and are 1.4 percent higher than one year ago. 
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Construction Adds Jobs in June But Nonresidential Growth is Sluggish

The U.S. construction industry added 6,000 jobs in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) July 3 report; however, nonresidential construction added only 700 of those jobs and the heavy and civil engineering sector lost 700 jobs.
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