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Industry Updates

Construction Employment is Down in 75% of the States, AGC Reports

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The Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America recently released the results of analysis that found that construction employment in October stayed depressed in 75% of the states, compared to pre-pandemic levels. This was despite the fact that 36 states and Washington, D.C., added new construction jobs last month.

“An increasing number of non-residential contractors are experiencing cancellations that are forcing them to lay off workers,” AGC Chief Economist Ken Simonson said. “Although single-family homebuilding and remodeling contractors are adding workers, most states are likely to have a net loss of construction workers soon, especially from high-paying, non-residential jobs.”

According to Simonson, seasonally adjusted construction employment in October was less than in February in 37 states. The state of New York lost the majority of the construction jobs over that period, totaling to 41,600. It was followed by Texas with 41,500 jobs.

“Although single-family homebuilding and remodeling contractors are adding workers, most states are likely to have a net loss of construction workers soon, especially from high-paying, non-residential jobs.”

AGC noted that its officials have urged Congress to create new coronavirus relief measures to help offset the declining demand for most types of non-residential construction. These measures, the association notes, need to feature new infrastructure investments, liability reforms to protect honest firms from unjustified pandemic lawsuits, and an extension of and new flexibility for measures like the Paycheck Protection Program.

“With the pandemic raging again in most parts of the country, countless construction jobs are at risk as owners cancel or delay construction projects amid uncertainty about the future,” AGC CEO Stephen E. Sandherr said. “Enacting needed new recovery measures now will help protect many good-paying construction careers during what will likely be a difficult winter for the economy.”