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May 8, 2023

New Construction Put in Place Data Released

The latest Construction Put in Place numbers were released by the U.S. Census Bureau on May 1, 2023. This covers design and construction spending data for both private and public sectors for the month of March 2023. The data provides our industry with a year-over-year (YoY) analysis from March 2022 to March 2023 based on preliminary and seasonally adjusted data.

Here’s what we learned:

  • Total design and construction spending was up YoY by 3.8%. 
  • Private residential spending continues to slide — this time by double digits — down -10%.
  • Private non-residential remains up by 19.4% and public spending is up 15% based on preliminary seasonally adjusted data.
  • Public sector spending is trending up. The YoY growth from February 2022 to 2023 was 12%, and now we see 15% growth YoY for March.

This Construction Spending trendline chart shows public spending has reached a new all-time high since 2017. Most notably though is the YoY change in spending in the private residential market. In February 2023 YoY numbers showed a -5.7% decline and in March a -10% drop. Conversely private non-residential continues a growth pattern up 19% in February YoY to up 21% March YoY.

Power and residential (public and private) are both down YoY at -2.5% and -8.8% YoY, respectively, based on not seasonally adjusted data. All other markets are up, especially manufacturing, which is up 57.5% YoY.

However, the spending in the residential market is so much larger than all other markets that are showing growth this month. Manufacturing investment for March 2023 year-to-date is $34 billion where the combined residential market is worth $184 billion in the same period. Here one can see the weight that the residential market holds as an indicator of a potential economic slowdown.

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May 8, 2023



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