Construction's February unemployment rate of 21.8% showed improvement over January's 22.5% rate and was a substantial drop from February 2010's 27.1%. Related Links: Bureau of Labor Statistics Release Analysis From Associated General Contractors of America Analysis From Associated Builders & Contractors The Bureau of Labor Statistics latest monthly employment snapshot, released on March 4, reports that construction gained 33,000 jobs last month. But the bureau also note that the industry's February gain followed a loss of 22,000 jobs in January, which it says "may have reflected severe winter weather." Construction's 21.8% jobless rate also remains the worst among major U.S.
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.