U.S. construction spending hits four-year high

Residential real estate sent U.S. construction spending soaring to a four-year high in July. The U.S. Department of Commerce reported today that spending rose 0.6 percent compared to the previous month – the most since June 2009 – to $900.8 billion annually. More than 50 economists projected an increase of merely 0.4 percent.

Spending for non-residential projects saw a rise of 1.3 percent in the same period, as a result of more factory construction. Residential increased 12.9 percent on an annualized basis.

In July, there were fewer single-family homes built, with the number dropping 2.2 percent to 591,000 on an annualized basis — the lowest since November. However, a rebound in multifamily home construction brought total housing starts up, to 896,000 [Bloomberg News]Mark Maurer

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