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Financial News: U.S. Construction Spending Jumps Much More Than Expected

U.S. Construction Spending Jumps Much More Than Expected In August

10/01/2020 - 11:39:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - With spending on private construction showing a significant increase, the Commerce Department released a report on Thursday showing U.S. construction spending jumped much more than expected in the month of August.

The report said construction spending surged up by 1.4 percent to an annual rate of $1.413 trillion in August after climbing by 0.7 percent to an upwardly revised rate of $1.393 trillion in July.

Economists had expected construction spending to increase by 0.8 percent compared to the 0.1 percent uptick originally reported for the previous month.

"Construction spending for the third quarter is looking much better than it did a month ago, with spending for August coming in much stronger than expected and spending for July (and June) revised higher," said Nancy Vanden Houten, Lead U.S. Economist at Oxford Economics.

She added, "Third quarter real GDP is currently tracking around 32.7% annualized, a bit stronger than our prior forecast, in part because of the stronger construction spending data."

The much bigger than expected increase came as spending on private construction spiked by 1.9 percent to an annual rate of $1.061 trillion in August after jumping by 1.3 percent to an upwardly revised rate of $1.042 trillion in July.

Spending on residential construction soared by 3.7 percent to a rate of $589.4 billion, while spending on non-residential construction rose by 0.3 percent to a rate of $472.0 billion.

Meanwhile, the Commerce Department said spending on public construction inched up by 0.1 percent to an annual rate of $351.4 billion in August after tumbling by 1.2 percent to a revised rate of $350.9 billion in July.

The report said spending on educational construction climbed by 0.6 percent to a rate of $82.6 billion, and spending on highway construction jumped by 1.9 percent to a rate of $100.6 billion.

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