Construction spending during April 2020 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,346.2 billion, 2.9 percent below the revised March estimate of $1,386.6 billion. The April figure is 3.0 percent above the April 2019 estimate of $1,307.1 billion.
Both private and public spending decreased:
Spending on private construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,004.1 billion, 3.0 percent below the revised March estimate of $1,035.6 billion. …
n April, the estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of public construction spending was $342.1 billion, 2.5 percent below the revised March estimate of $351.0 billion.
This graph shows private residential and nonresidential construction spending, and public spending, since 1993. Note: nominal dollars, not inflation adjusted.
Residential spending is 21% below the previous peak.
Non-residential spending is 13% above the previous peak in January 2008 (nominal dollars).
Public construction spending is 5% above the previous peak in March 2009, and 30% above the austerity low in February 2014.
On a year-over-year basis, private residential construction spending is up 6.2%. Non-residential spending is up 1.1% year-over-year. Public spending is up 0.8% year-over-year.
This was above consensus expectations of a 6% decrease in spending, and construction spending for February and March were revised up.
Construction was considered an essential service in most areas and hasn’t declined sharply like many other sectors.