WASHINGTON Feb 3 U.S. construction spending
rose modestly in December to its highest level since March 2009,
as a jump in private residential projects offset weakness in the
public construction sector.
Construction spending was up 0.1 percent to an annual rate
of $930.5 billion, the Commerce Department said on Monday.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected an increase of 0.2
Construction spending in November was revised to show a 0.8
percent rise instead of the previously reported 1.0 percent
The December construction spending data was buoyed by a 2.6
percent jump in private residential construction. Overall
private construction spending increased 1.0 percent to an annual
rate of $663.9 billion, the highest level since December 2008.
Public construction spending, however, fell 2.3 percent, its
biggest drop in a year, with state and local outlays falling 2.7
percent. Federal construction spending was up 2.0 percent in the
(Reporting by Paul Simao; Editing by Melissa Bland)