March U.S. Construction Spending Inches Up 0.1%

March U.S. construction spending rose 0.1% month-over-month, which was much weaker than the 0.4% increase expected by consensus. It also comes after February was revised downward to a 1.4% drop (previously down 1.1%). Residential spending rose 0.7% in March, after falling 2.2% in February. Nonresidential spending also rose 0.7% after a 1.7% drop in February (revised from a 1.6% decline). Private spending rose 0.7% in March after falling 1.9% the previous month (was -0.8%), while public construction spending fell 1.1% in March to its lowest level in over five years after a 0.3% decrease in February. Construction spending for March stood at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $808.1 billion, which is 6% above a 12-year low of $762.6 billion seen last March. The report was disappointing, though the upbeat ISM manufacturing sentiment data may help offset the news.

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