June 7, 2016
Construction employment fell for the second consecutive month in May. According to the Association of General Contractors, industry pay increases and low unemployment, suggests the problem isn’t lack of jobs, so much as it is lack of individuals to do those jobs.
Construction employment totaled 6,645,000 in May, a drop of 15,000 from April. Even with the back-to-back decreases, industry employment increased by 219,000, or 3.4 percent, compared to a year ago.
“Average pay in construction is rising faster than in the rest of the private sector, and the number of unemployed construction workers was at the lowest May level in 16 years,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “These facts support what contractors tell us: they have plenty of work but are struggling to find qualified workers to hire.”