US construction spending grew just 0.1 per cent in February

In this Tuesday, March 27, 2018, photo, construction cranes in Southwest Washington are silhouetted against the morning sky as redevelopment continues in the waterfront area of the District of Columbia. On Monday, April 2, 2018, the Commerce Department reports on U.S. construction spending in February. (AP Photo/J. David Ake)

WASHINGTON - Spending on U.S. construction projects ticked up a mere 0.1 per cent in February from the prior month, a sign that a growing economy is doing little to spur a more rapid pace for building homes, hospitals and highways.

The Commerce Department says construction spending came in at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.27 trillion. The lower unemployment rate and solid business and consumer confidence has supported an increase in hotel and office construction, but spending on the power grid and roadways has slipped. Construction spending over the past 12 months is up just 3 per cent before adjusting for inflation.

Residential construction, the largest single category, rose just 0.1 per cent in February. Some of the sluggishness in February was due to a 2.1 per cent drop in government-funded construction.

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