Construction employment took another jump in May, gaining 23,000 jobs in the month, with increases in nearly all sectors of the industry, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported.
The latest monthly BLS employment report, released July 7, showed that the residential specialty trade contractors segment recorded the strongest results in May, adding 10,000 jobs.
Heavy and civil engineering construction gained 7,300 jobs and nonresidential buildings construction was up by 5,400 positions, BLS reported. The only category to lose jobs was nonresidential specialty trade contractors, which shed 500 positions.
Construction employment totaled 7,947,000, in June, up 198,000, or 2.6%, from the year-earlier level, according to the BLS figures.
Economists: Tight Labor Market Continues
Anirban Basu, Associated Builders and Contractors chief economist, said in a statement that construction contractors as a group have added jobs in 15 of the last 16 months. Basu said that ABC's most recent Construction Confidence Index "suggests they will continue to increase staffing levels through the remainder of the year."
Ken Simonson, Associated General Contractors of America's chief economist, said in a statement, "There was no letup in demand for construction workers in June, while the supply of available workers remained exceptionally tight."
Basu and Simonson also pointed to another indicator of the tight labor market: a separate BLS report, released on July 6, showing that construction had 396,000 job openings as of the end of May.
Construction’s unemployment rate edged up to 3.6% in June, from 3.5% in May but was down slightly from the year-earlier mark of 3.7%.
The bureau's jobs numbers are adjusted for seasonal changes; its unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted.
Overall, the economy added 209,000 jobs in June and its unemployment rate dipped to 3.6% from 3.7% in May. The June rate also held even with the June 2022 number.