How Office, Industrial and Retail Development and Construction Contributed to the U.S. Economy in 2012

By: Dr. Stephen S. Fuller

Release Date: October 2013

Development and construction of new commercial real estate – office, industrial and retail buildings – continued its climb in 2012, supporting approximately 2.3 million American jobs and contributing $303.4 billion to the nation’s economy, marking the second year that the sector posted gains since 2007.

Study highlights include:

  • Commercial real estate alone supported at least 2.3 million American jobs in 2012
  • Commercial real estate contributed $303.4 billion to U.S. GDP, a 16% increase from 2011
  • Construction and development spending grows nearly 10% from 2011
  • 307.5 million square feet built in 2012, a 29% increase from 2011

In 2012, the commercial real estate development sector added $303.4 billion to the U.S. GDP, up from $261.6 billion in 2011, a near 16 percent increase, according to the report. This addition to the economy generated $96.7 billion in new personal earnings and supported 2.3 million full-time equivalent, year-round jobs.