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Home construction spending falls for 20th straight month

Total construction spending rate drops to $1.16 billion in October

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The rate of U.S. residential construction spending hit its lowest level in four years and fell for the 20th consecutive month in October, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of spending for private residential construction projects dropped to $503.7 million in October, down about 16.2 percent compared to October 2006 and down about 27.6 percent from a record peak of $696 million in February 2006. This rate is a projection of a monthly construction-spending total over a 12-month period, adjusted to account for seasonal fluctuations in construction activity. Total construction spending -- including public and private residential and non-residential spending -- dipped to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.16 billion in October, down about 0.6 percent compared to October 2006. During the first 10 months of the year, total construction spending amounted to an estimated $977 billion, or 2.8 percent below the same period in 2006. Total spending for privat...