According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of construction spending for March 2015 was at $966.6 billion. This is 0.6 percent below February’s revised rate of $972.9 billion. The good news is that with February’s rate being revised up from its preliminary estimate of $967.2 billion, last month actually saw an increase in spending. January’s seasonally adjusted annual rate of construction spending was revised to $972.8 billion. The March rate is 2.0 percent higher than the seasonally adjusted rate for March 2014 of 947.3 billion.
Another positive takeaway is that total spending in March was $72.7 billion, which is 3.7 percent higher than the $70.1 billion spent during March 2014. Total spending for 1st Quarter 2015 was at $206.7 billion which outpaced 1st Quarter 2014 spending of $200.4 billion.
Private construction spending was at a seasonally adjusted rate of $702.4 billion in March. This is down slightly from February’s revised figure of $704.7 billion. Private nonresidential construction spending hit $353.4 billion. This is higher than the $350.1 billion in February and the $324.2 in March 2014.
The seasonally adjusted annual rate for public construction spending fell from February’s revised figure of 268.2 billion to $264.2 billion in March.
March still saw some areas in the country affected by severe winter weather. Despite the fact that the seasonally adjusted annual rate dropped again, March still outpaced spending in the year-over- year and month-over-month comparison. The 1st Quarter year-over-year numbers also outpaced the 2014 figure of total construction spending. The next couple of months’ reports will give a better indication of how the construction industry will shake out in terms of construction spending.