U.S. construction spending unexpectedly fell in July, hitting a nine-month low amid a steep decline in investment in private structures.
The Commerce Department said on Friday that construction spending decreased 0.6 percent to $1.21 trillion also as investment on public sector projects fell.
That was the lowest level since October 2016 and followed a downwardly revised 1.4 percent tumble in June.
Economists polled by Reuters had forecast construction spending increasing 0.5 percent in July after a previously reported 1.3 percent drop in June. Construction spending increased 1.8 percent on a year-on-year basis.
In July, spending on private nonresidential structures plunged 1.9 percent to the lowest level since April 2016.
The percent drop was biggest since October 2015 and followed a 1.6 percent fall in June. Investment in residential and nonresidential structures such as oil and gas wells is slowing as the boost from recovering oil prices fades.
As a result,