Construction spending in the public and private sectors increased slightly in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,035.8 billion. The figure was up 0.8 percent from the April number which was, however substantially revised from $1,006.1 billion to $1,027.0 billion.
The Census Bureau estimate of May spending, which includes construction put in place in residential and 16 other categories such as lodging, education, and health care, was 8.2 percent higher than expenditures of $957.6 billion in May 2014. During the first five months of 2015 spending has totaled $382.1 billion, a 5.9 percent increase over the year-to-date figure a year earlier.
Total residential spending - the bulk of which is in the private sector - was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $366.1 billion in May, up 0.8 percent from April's revised (from $359.4 billion) estimate of $365.0 billion and 8.2 percent higher than a year earlier.
Total spending on construction in the private sector was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $752.4 billion, a 0.9 percent increase from April's estimate of $745.6 billion and 10.3 percent higher than in May 2014. Private residential spending was estimated at a rate of 359.5 billion compared to $353.5 billion in April, a +0.3 percent change. Spending was 7.8 percent above the level of a year earlier.
New single-family construction spending was estimated at a rate of $209.4 billion, unchanged from the previous month but representing an 11.2 percent increase year-over-year. New multi-family construction increased by 0.2 percent from April to $48.8 billion, 20.8 percent higher than in May 2014.
Year-to-date private sector spending through the end of May was 6.9 percent higher than during the same period in 2014 at $283.4 billion. Residential spending during the five month period rose 6.1 percent while new single family construction was up 13.4 percent and multi-family construction increased by 25.0 percent.
Total spending in the public sector was estimated at an annual rate of $283.4 billion, a positive 0.7 percent change from the April estimate of $281.5 billion and 2.8 percent higher than a year earlier. Residential Construction, while only at a rate of $6.6 billion was 39.4 percent higher than in May 2014 and year-to-date public sector residential spending is running 30.5 percent higher than last year.