10 of the World's Most Expensive Megaprojects
From the Top Down: Ending Sexual Harassment in the Construction Industry
Spending Up for the Month, Down for the Year
Friday Funny: "Raising the Roof"
Tracking Technology Helps Construction Companies Save Money, Improve Safety
What The ‘Tech’ Just Happened to Meetings?
Weekly Grind: The Future of Construction Technology Across the Country
Friday Funny: It's Just Ergonomics
By Anirban Basu
September 4, 2017
Data Confuses rather than Clarifies
Nonresidential construction spending totaled $719.1 billion in May 2017 on a seasonally-adjusted annualized basis according to data supplied by the U.S. Census Bureau. It has been falling ever since. In June, it declined 2.6 percent to $700.3 billion. As we learned today, in July if fell yet further, this time to $688.4 billion. The volume of nonresidential construction spending hasn’t been this low since December 2015. July’s losses were widespread, with both private (-1.9%) and public (-1.4%) spending declining. Fully thirteen of sixteen nonresidential construction sectors experienced declines.
Of course, this may be largely a statistical anomaly. Earlier today, we received data suggesting that construction job gains in August were large and that the industry’s unemployment rate continued to decline. Those data indicate that construction activity remains robust and is expanding. While data are intended to clarify, today’s data were confusing, with the jobs data indicating trends diametrically opposed to those suggested by the construction spending data.
When statistical data conflict, it makes sense to turn to anecdotal information. Anecdotally, many construction firms continue to report significant backlog and decent pricing power. The implication is that today’s spending data may eventually be revised higher. In any case, the events impacting Houston and other communities will likely lead to stepped up construction spending during the months ahead.
Nonresidential Spending Growth, Millions of Dollars, Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate
1-Month % Change
12-Month % Change
Highway and street
Sewage and waste disposal
Amusement and recreation
Conservation and development
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Are Your Emotions Setting You Up For a Construction Dispute?
That master strategist Sun Tzu knew a thing or two about out-thinking the competition. Turns out his focus on strategy over strength can be applied to gaining an edge in the construction industry. ... Read More
If you're a construction worker, you're most likely working physical labor and it can get hot if you're working under the sun. Here's a guide for h... Read More
As an architectural statement, the campus is a monument both to Apple’s corporate success and centrality to the global tech culture. At 176 acres, ... Read More
August 8, 2016
"Some of the cool things that we're doing on job sites today are with Rovers and the alive platform. Alive is that software platform that glues to... Read More
The National Association of Women in Construction has a new executive vice president. This change marks a “brand new day and brand new way” for the... Read More
Every construction business owner can learn a lot from competitors. But merely copying them won't do. You will just always stay one step behind. So... Read More
We've selected eight women from all walks of life to ask them one common question: what advice would you give women who want to enter the construct... Read More