The rate of spending on private residential construction in June dropped about 1 percent since May but was roughly level with the June 2005 rate, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today.

Residential construction spending was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about $641.6 billion in June. The rate is a projection of a monthly total over a 12-month period, adjusted for seasonal fluctuations in construction activity.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of all construction spending in June was estimated at $1.22 trillion, which is about 0.3 percent above the revised May estimate and about 6.8 percent above the June 2005 estimate.

Construction spending amounted to $569.3 billion during the first six months of the year, or about 8.5 percent above the $524.8 billion reported for the same period in 2005.

Spending on private construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about $944.7 billion, or 0.1 percent above the revised May estimate of $943.6 billion. Private nonresidential construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about $303.1 billion in June, or 2.7 percent above the revised May estimate of $295.2 billion.

In June, the estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of public construction spending was about $272.5 billion, or 0.8 percent above the revised May estimate. Educational construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about $68.9 billion, or 0.4 percent below the revised May estimate of $69.2 billion. Highway construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about $77.8 billion, or 0.1 percent above the revised May estimate of $77.7 billion.

The Census Bureau noted that month-to-month changes in seasonally adjusted statistics often show irregular movements. It can take two months to establish an underlying trend for total construction and as long as eight months for specific categories of construction, the agency reported.

Statistics are estimated from several sources and surveys and are subject to sampling variability and non-sampling error including bias and variance from response, non-reporting, and under-coverage. Statistics for the current month are preliminary estimates subject to revision in following months as additional data become available.

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