Construction Spending Hits Ten-Year Low

Nancy Anderson
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Construction spending tumbled in December of 2010 to the lowest annually-adjusted amount in ten years, according to a press release form the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC). In their press release, they detail a mixed outlook for the construction industry, leaving a lot of those looking for work in the construction industry wondering what the future may hold.

Due to declines in spending over the month of December 2010, the national yearly-equivalent construction spending dipped to US$788 billion; the lowest it’s been since 2000. The AGC is again renewing it’s call to the administration and congress to extend stimulus funding to the construction industry, as without it, 2011 looks set to show even greater setbacks for an industry that’s seen continuous decline for almost a decade now.

The one shining light appears to be construction spending on energy infrastructure projects. Power construction climbed for the fifth straight month, and was 13 percent higher than power construction spending for December 2009, largely due to increased production and transmissions capabilities for U.S. utilities companies. Though reports do seem to indicate that the majority of construction companies are planning on hiring new employees in 2011, whether or not this is due to a projected upswing in the construction market is up for some debate; it may simply be that the industry, fearing the worst, over-tightened their belts somewhat. Either way, things could yet turn around for the industry in the coming year.

Mike Wrightly is mostly diesel fumes and duct tape; he grew up around heavy equipment, and holds a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering.

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