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Total Construction Starts Slip in January

Total construction starts fell 27 percent in January to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $865.6 billion, according to Dodge Construction Network. During the month, nonresidential building starts fell 38 percent, residential starts lost 20 percent, and nonbuilding starts declined by 16 percent.

The data

Comparatively, total construction was 14 percent lower in January 2023 than in January 2022. Nonresidential building starts were down 2 percent, nonbuilding starts rose 10 percent, and residential starts lost 34 percent. For the 12 months ending January 2023, total construction starts were 13 percent higher than the 12 months ending January 2022. Nonresidential starts were 36 percent higher, residential starts lost 6 percent, and nonbuilding starts were up 19 percent.

What Dodge says

“January’s decline in construction starts should not be taken as the beginning of a cyclical downturn in the industry,” says Richard Branch, chief economist for Dodge Construction Network. “Numerous mega-projects have begun over the last few months, obscuring the underlying trend in construction activity. While some construction sectors will face stress as the year progresses, current fundamentals point to an industry that is fairly well positioned to weather the storm.”

Read the full breakdown