Construction spending declined 0.3% in February to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.12 billion, according to the Census Bureau. Year-to-date (YTD) spending in the first two months of 2008 was 2.6% lower than in January-February 2007. Leading the decline, residential construction fell 0.9% for the month and 20% YTD. Private non-residential spending decreased 0.1% in February, but was up 16% YTD. Public non-residential spending rose 0.5% and 6.6% YTD.

Among private residential categories, new single-family construction fell 33% YTD, compared to 27% from 2006 to 2007. New multi-family was down 20% versus 7.5% from 2006 to 2007. Yet, improvements rose 10% YTD versus 0.4% from 2006 to 2007.