WASHINGTON Oct 3 U.S. construction spending
fell in August for the second straight month to its lowest level
in eight months, an unexpected drop driven by weakness across
public and private sectors.
The successive declines suggest home building might not help
economic growth in the third quarter.
The Commerce Department said on Monday construction spending
dropped 0.7 percent in August to a seasonally adjusted annual
rate of $1.142 trillion, the lowest since December 2015.
Economists had expected outlays to rise 0.2 percent.
The government also revised downward its estimate for July,
saying spending declined 0.3 percent rather than the initial
estimate that outlays were unchanged.
In August, private construction spending fell 0.3 percent,
with outlays on residential construction down by the same
Spending on private nonresidential structures fell 0.4
percent in August.
Public construction spending dropped 2.0 percent in August
to the lowest level since March 2014, with lower spending
reported for highways and schools.
(Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Andrea Ricci)