May contracts decrease 16 percentMcGraw-Hill Construction, a division of The McGraw-Hill Cos., New York, has reported construction starts decreased 16 percent in May. During the first five months of the year, total construction was up 6 percent compared with the same time period in 2011.
"Excluding the lift coming from this year's nuclear power projects, the pattern for construction starts shows a loss of momentum through March followed by strengthening activity in April and May," says Robert A. Murray, vice president of economic affairs for McGraw-Hill Construction. "The overall level of activity so far this year, without the nuclear power projects, actually is running slightly behind 2011, but at least the recent trend has been upward after a particularly weak start to 2012. The picture of a construction market that's struggling to achieve upward momentum, with gains for some project types but losses for other project types, continues to hold true.
"Housing is edging upward as earlier advances for multifamily housing now are being joined by gradual growth for single-family housing," he continues. "The commercial building sector has registered slight improvement from the extremely depressed amount back in 2010, but its upturn remains tenuous. On the downside, the institutional structure types and public works construction still face diminished funding from the federal, state and local levels of government."
Nonresidential building construction rose 12 percent in May. In the commercial category, manufacturing plant construction soared 108 percent; hotel construction jumped 48 percent; office construction grew 32 percent; warehouse construction slipped 16 percent; and store construction decreased 29 percent. In the institutional category, transportation terminal construction surged 134 percent; educational buildings jumped 22 percent; public buildings climbed 16 percent; churches decreased 12 percent; amusement-related construction fell 20 percent; and health care facility construction dropped 29 percent.
Residential building construction grew 8 percent in May. Single-family housing increased 2 percent, and multifamily construction increased 33 percent.
Nonbuilding construction decreased 47 percent in May.
During the first five months of 2012, nonresidential building decreased 18 percent compared with the first five months of 2011. Residential building was up 24 percent, and nonbuilding construction increased 20 percent. By geographic region, the South Atlantic rose 67 percent; Midwest increased 8 percent; Northeast dropped 8 percent; West fell 11 percent; and South Central decreased 14 percent.
Date : 7/3/2012 12:00 AM