U.S. Construction Spending Oozes Up 0.2% for April

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Construction spending inched ahead 0.2% in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $954 billion, according to a Commerce Department report (link opens as PDF) released today. 

While today's report fell well below analyst expectations of 0.7% month-to-month growth, March's number was revised upward from 0.2% to 0.6%. 

Source: Commerce Department 

Private construction barely budged for April, maintaining the same seasonally adjusted annual rate of $687 billion. Residential construction edged up 0.1% to $379 billion, while nonresidential construction took a 0.1% dip to $308 billion.

Public construction carried April's marginal improvement, increasing 0.8% to a rate of $267 billion. Educational construction jumped 3% to $62.6 billion, while highway spending fell 1.1% to $81.3 billion.

So far for 2014, overall construction spending is up 8.9% compared to the same period in 2013.

While this latest report fell short of expectations, the housing market is still making progress, according to other reports. New-home sales jumped 6.4% for April as existing-home sales tacked on a respectable 1.3%.

Construction spending is a push-and-pull with consumer demand, and homebuilders are still hesitant to boost supplies. In the report released today, spending on single-family home construction was up 1.3%, while spending on apartment construction rose 2.7%.

-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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