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Total construction spending ticked down in January, as a 5.1 percent increase in residential spending was offset by a decline of 3.3 percent in the larger contributor to total spending, non-residential construction. These movements combined for a monthly decrease of 0.7 percent in total construction spending.
Driving the decline in non-residential were lodging, which decreased by 20.2 percent, and power, which decreased by 10.9 percent. Public safety, conservation and development, and water supply were among a handful of segments that increased slightly over the month. Private construction spending exhibited the same dynamic: monthly increases in residential spending offset by decreases in nonresidential with lodging and power driving the decline.
Looking over the longer term, total construction spending has decreased −5.9 percent since January 2010. Residential spending decreased 7.0 percent over that period and non-residential spending decreased 5.3 percent. The largest long term declines were seen in lodging (−44.9 percent), manufacturing (−25.5 percent) and office (−22.6 percent). Water supply, conservation and development, and highway and street construction were bright spots, all posting double-digit percent increases in spending over the year.