New construction starts fell a bit this summer, according to Pit&Quarry, a magazine for the Aggregate Industry.
At a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $817.4 billion, new construction starts in July fell 9 percent compared with the June reading, reports Dodge Data & Analytics. The July statistics also produced a reading of 173 for the Dodge Index (2000=100), down from the 190 for June, which was the highest level so far during 2018.
The data says the July dip is following up after a significant increase in May and June.
“The pattern of construction starts on a monthly basis is often affected by the presence or absence of very large projects, and several exceptionally large projects boosted activity in June to an unsustainably high amount,” says Robert Murray, chief economist for Dodge Data & Analytics. “These June projects included a $6.5 billion uranium processing plant in Tennessee and a $1.7 billion petrochemical plant in Texas, as well as the $1.8 billion Spiral office tower in New York and a $665 million office tower in Chicago. While July also featured the start of several large projects, such as a $2.4 billion petrochemical plant in Texas and a $750 million data center in Alabama, the lift from very large projects in July was less than what took place in June. Still, the pace of construction starts in July came in 2 percent above the average for the second quarter, which is consistent with the sense that overall construction starts continue to trend upward, notwithstanding July’s steep decline compared to June.”
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