New construction starts in June advanced 9% from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $832.7 billion, according to Dodge Data & Analytics.

The increase followed the 10% gain reported for May, as total construction starts continued to strengthen following April’s subdued performance. By major sector, much of the lift in June came from a 16% jump for nonresidential building, which reflected the start of the $1.1 billion expansion to Terminal 5 at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, as well as sharp gains for office buildings, public buildings (detention facilities and courthouses), healthcare facilities, and warehouses.

Adobe Stock/Jandrie Lombard

The other two major sectors registered moderate growth in June, with non-building construction up 6% and residential building up 5%. Through the first six months of 2019, total construction starts on an unadjusted basis were $378.8 billion, down 8% from the same period a year ago. On a twelve-month moving total basis, total construction starts for the twelve months ending June 2019 were 4% below the amount for the twelve months ending June 2018.

Residential building in June was $318.2 billion (annual rate), up 5% which followed a 2% gain in May. Multifamily housing registered its strongest amount since last November, advancing 26% in June. The pace for multifamily housing in June was 3% above its average monthly pace during 2018.

Single-family housing in June slipped 3%, receding after a 2% gain in May, as this project type has yet to see any sustained growth during the first half of 2019. The pace for single-family housing in June was 6% below its average monthly pace during 2018.

By region, the first half of 2019 showed this performance for single-family housing compared to last year – the South Atlantic, down 5%; the South Central, down 6%; the West, down 8%; the Midwest, down 11%; and the Northeast, down 12%.

June’s data raised the Dodge Index to 176 (2000=100), compared to an upwardly revised 161 for May. June’s reading was the highest so far for the Dodge Index during 2019, topping the 175 for March, and coming in slightly above the full year 2018 average for the Dodge Index at 172.