The Construction Labor Research Council announced that labor rates in construction rose 3.8 percent in 2000, representing an increase over 1999 in which labor rates rose 3.3 percent. Based upon the many increases already negotiated in contracts for the next two years, wages and fringes will continue to rise at about the same rate. Already scheduled future increases average 3.7 percent for both 2001 and 2002.

The higher annual wage and fringe increase in 2000 exceeded the long-term industry pattern. Prior to 2000, there had been 13 consecutive years in which the annual rate of increase ranged between 2.2 percent and 3.6 percent. The increase for 2000 was the largest since 1983.