US construction spending increases solid 0.9% in November

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Photo credit Construction workers clear out debris from the demolition of the original building at TSX Broadway under construction, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020, in New York's, Times Square. The 46-story mixed-use property will house 75,000 square feet of retail space, a a 4,000-square-foot performance venue including an outdoor stage, an outdoor food and beverage terrace and a luxury hotel. U.S. construction spending rose 0.3% in September, the fourth straight monthly gain after a coronavirus-caused spring swoon. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Spending on U.S. construction projects increased 0.9% in November as strength in home building offset weakness in other parts of the construction industry.

The November gain followed a bigger 1.6% rise in October and left construction spending up 4.4% through the first 11 months of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019, according to the Commerce Department.

For November, spending on residential construction rose 2.7% with single-family construction surging 5.1 percent while apartment construction was flat, according to the new data released Monday. Record low mortgage rates have spurred strong demand for housing even as a global pandemic resulted in widespread lock downs for other parts of the economy.

Spending on non-residential projects fell 0.8% with spending for office buildings dropping a sharp 8.1%. Spending on government projects dipped 0.2% in November. Many state and local governments are facing severe budget constraints as a sharp recession has cut into tax revenues.