WASHINGTON – Builders cut back on construction spending in January by the largest amount in nine months, with weakness stemming from the biggest reduction in government activity in nearly 15 years.
The Commerce Department says that construction spending fell 1 percent in January. It was the first decline since September and the biggest drop since a 2.9 percent dip in April.
Residential construction showed a modest gain, while private nonresidential activity was flat. However, spending on government projects tumbled 5 percent, the largest one-month drop since March 2002.
President Donald Trump wants to sharply increase spending on government infrastructure projects over the next decade. But his proposal is expected to face hurdles winning approval in Congress at a time of rising budget deficits.
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