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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Barbara Ruszel Economist
Tel: 902-424-1848Email:

September 01, 2017


US construction spending decreased by 0.6 per cent in July compared to June, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,212 billion. Residential construction spending increased by 0.8 per cent while non-residential spending decreased by 1.7 per cent. Private spending declined 0.4 per cent while public spending decreased by 1.4 per cent.

Compared to July of 2016, total construction spending was up 1.8 per cent, with increased residential (11.2 per cent) partially offset by decreased non-residential spending (-4.3 per cent). Private spending increased by 4.1 per cent while the relatively smaller public spending category decreased 5.6 per cent.

In the first seven months of the year, total spending was up 4.8 per cent compared to the same period in 2016. Residential spending grew by 11.6 per cent while non-residential grew by 0.3 per cent. Private spending increased 7.9 per cent while public spending fell 4.8 per cent.               

US construction spending, especially residential spending, is an important indicator for Nova Scotia's wood exports. Though not a perfect predictor, US residential construction spending and the value of Nova Scotia's wood exports follow similar directions over time. In 2016, US residential construction spending increased by 5.4 per cent over 2015, while Nova Scotia's wood product exports to the U.S. grew 5.2 per cent.

Source: US Census Bureau

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