Nonresidential construction spending hits 27-month low
August 15, 2011 | 11:04 am CDT
ARLINGTON, VA - Spending on nonresidential construction activity tumbled 1.5% in October, seasonally adjusted, to the lowest annual rate since July 2007, according to a new analysis of Census Bureau data conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America.

The data showed that nonresidential construction spending slumped to $652 billion, an 11% decline compared to October 2008, the association added.
“Even formerly robust construction segments, such as manufacturing and power, have run out of steam,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist, noting that spending on both categories of construction dropped more than 2 percent from September. “Worse, the impacts of the stimulus have been more limited and temporary because of needless delays and red tape.”

Simonson noted that developer-financed categories, including private lodging, office and commercial – retail, warehouse and farm – fell between 2% and 6% for the month and 37% to 45% over the past 12 months. The economist added that while the largest public category, highway and street construction, was up 4.7% compared to October 2008, it slipped 0.3% between September and October.

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