July was a good month for new construction starts nationally, according to a new report just issued by Dodge Data & Analytics, with an overall increase of 2 percent nationally from the month before.
Even though that 2 percent is smaller than the 10 percent and 9 percent gains recorded in May and June of this year respectively, the numbers show an overall strong construction picture.
Among the top segment gainers was the public works sector, with a 24 percent increase in July over the month before. In a statement, Robert Murray, Dodge chief economist, said the increase in public projects was typical of what usually happens “during the latter stages of construction expansion.”
Such projects, added Murray, serve to moderate conventional cycle slowdowns.
Another healthy segment was seen in the commercial building categories, which were up by 4 percent in July. Store construction advanced by a very healthy 24 percent, while office construction posted a 1 percent gain.
Overall, total construction value in July hit the $849 million mark, up from $833 million the month before.
By Garry Boulard
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