RTTNews - Construction spending unexpectedly increased in the month of April, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Monday, with the unexpected growth reflecting a notable increase in spending on private construction.

The report showed that construction spending increased by 0.8 percent to an annual rate of $968.7 billion in April following a revised 0.4 percent increase in March. Economists had expected spending to decrease by about 0.8 percent.

Despite the unexpected monthly increase, construction spending for April is down 10.7 percent compared to the same month last year. Additionally, spending for the first 4 months of the year is down 11.3 percent compared to the same period a year ago.

A notable increase in spending on private construction spending contributed to the unexpected monthly increase in April, with spending on private construction rising 1.4 percent to an annual rate of $657.3 billion.

Spending on residential construction increased by 0.7 percent, while spending on non-residential construction rose 1.8 percent.

At the same time, the report showed that spending on public construction fell 0.6 percent in April to an annual rate of $311.4 billion. A 1.8 percent drop in spending on educational construction more than offset a 0.9 percent increase in spending on highway construction.

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