McGraw Hill, Federal Reserve differ on construction industry

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Researchers have different opinions about economic trends in the construction industry, based on 2007 data.

For the year, McGraw Hill reported total construction was down by 11 percent last year, compared to a 3-percent drop during 2006.

Modest declines were reported for nonresidential building and non-building construction (public works and utilities), which were offset by a small increase for residential building, McGraw Hill said.

The Federal Reserve districts, in contrast, saw “modest” increases in economic activity during November and December.

“Demand continued to decline for construction workers and those in housing-related industries and conditions in manufacturing industries, producing construction and home-related goods remained weak,” the Fed’s report said.