Ken Simonson

Chief Economist, Associated General Contractors of America 703-837-5313; fax -5406; www.agc.org

ARTICLES

Construction hits three-year highs as jobs climb in January; spending rises in December

Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 157,000, seasonally adjusted, in January and 2,016,000 (1.5%) since January 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Feb. 1. 


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Construction starts dive, but housing sales improve

July brings the pace of total construction starts back to the lackluster activity reported at the outset of 2012. Separate reports from the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the National Association of Realtors and the Census Bureau showed, respectively, rising prices for existing single-family houses, rising sales and falling inventories for existing homes, and rising sales and record-low inventories of new homes.
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Construction hiring stalls, unemployment falls in June

The unemployment rate for former construction workers was 12.8%, not seasonally adjusted, down from 15.6% in June 2011 and 20.1% in June 2010.
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More metros lost than gained construction jobs in last 12 months

An AGC analysis released June 26 showed construction employment increased in 126 out of 337 areas for which BLS provides construction data (including divisions of larger metros), declined in 164 and stayed stagnant in 47.
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Construction jobs shrink in May, April construction spending rises

Over the past two years, construction employment was virtually unchanged but the number of unemployed hardhats fell by 605,000, suggesting workers are quitting construction, either to take jobs elsewhere, return to school, retire or otherwise leave the workforce.
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PPI jumps in March, more metros add jobs

The PPI for inputs to construction industries jumped 1.4% for the month, following a 0.9% gain in February, and 3.8% over 12 months.
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Half of metro areas add construction jobs

Half of metros add construction jobs; starts drop, MHC says; ABI stays barely favorable
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Construction employment below peak in all but eight areas; Jan. starts dip

The value of new construction starts fell 2%, seasonally adjusted, in January, McGraw-Hill Construction reported Feb. 21, based on data it collected.
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PPI moderates in January but some increases loom; housing starts, factory output rise

The PPI for inputs to construction industries rose 0.4% for the month and 4.5% over 12 months. Although higher than the finished goods PPI, the 12-month increase was the mildest for construction materials since the year ending in September 2010.
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Construction Jobs Drop In November; Census, Reed Say Spending Rose In October

The drop in industry unemployment, unaccompanied by a rise in construction employment, suggests workers are finding jobs in other industries, retiring, returning to school or training, or leaving the workforce. That may make hiring more difficult when construction demand picks up.
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