Construction Spending Dips Ahead of Outbreak Impact
As the world waits to see how much of an impact the coronavirus will have on March data points, U.S. construction spending took a slight dip in February. Construction spending was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,366.7 billion, which is down 1.3% from January, states the Census Bureau. However, February's spending is 6% higher than February 2019.
Economists predicted a 0.5% increase in construction spending in February, according to Reuters.
Private and public construction spending each took a step back in February. Private construction fell 1.2% from January—nonresidential spending dragging it down with a 2% drop. Residential spending also slipped 0.6% from the prior month. Public spending dropped 1.5% from January, pulled down by educational and highway construction.
As the coronavirus continues to spread across the country, the construction industry will be impacted at a greater rate—some locations shutting down projects altogether.
-Michael Miller, managing editor