January Construction Recedes 2 Percent
February 22, 2012

The value of new construction starts dropped 2 percent in January to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $402.2 billion, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, a division of The McGraw-Hill Cos. Both nonresidential building and housing settled back from December, while the nonbuilding construction sector managed to register a modest gain with the help of a rebound for new electric utility starts. On an unadjusted basis, total construction starts in January were reported at $27.0 billion, down 14 percent from the same month a year ago. For the 12 months ending January 2012 versus the 12 months ending January 2011, which lessens the volatility present in one-month comparisons, total construction starts were down 3 percent.

Nonresidential building in January slipped 1 percent to $139.9 billion (annual rate).

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