According to the Commerce Department, U.S. builders increased spending on homes, office buildings and other projects in August after a big decline in July. The gain still left the construction industry far below levels considered healthy.
The Commerce Department said that construction spending rose 1.4 percent in August. The increase followed a 1.4 percent drop in July, which had been the biggest setback in six months. Building activity reached a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $799.1 billion. That’s 4.8 percent above an 11-year low hit in March. But it’s barely more than half the $1.5 trillion pace considered healthy.
Analysts say it could be four years before construction returns to healthy levels. A dismal outlook for housing and a weak economy have forced governments to cut back on building plans.