The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) report that November levels of construction put in place reached their highest since May and were higher than those for the same month last year. Figures for the first 11 months of 2002 were also up 0.3% over those for the same period last year.

While trends visible for the past several months have remained consistent – private residential construction and public construction from January to November are both up 6% over the same period last year – private nonresidential construction is off 17%. And according to the AGC, state and local construction, which was up 11% for the first 11 months of the year and continued to buoy the industry, will begin to decline as budget constraints tighten purse strings. However, a record number of bond issues passed in November should help primary and secondary school construction, which is up 16%, continue to grow.