A closer look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) data for September — with an emphasis on constructions and additional analysis provided by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) — reveals that the job openings rate in construction edged down to 4.3% in September, with 333,000 open positions in the sector. This is higher than the 232,000 count recorded a year ago.
The housing market remains underbuilt and requires additional labor, lots, and lumber and building materials to increase inventory. In general, hiring in the construction sector remained strong in September at a 4.7% rate. The post-virus peak rate of hiring occurred in May 2020 (10.3%) as a rebound took hold in home building and remodeling. Hiring has generally slowed since that time, with the exception of a weather-related rebound in March 2021. Hiring has been impeded due to a lack of workers.
Construction sector layoffs declined significantly to near a 4-year low, at a 1.6% rate. In April 2020, the layoff rate was 10.9%. Since that time, however, the sector layoff rate has been below 3% (with the exception of February 2021 due to weather effects).
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Construction Layoff Rate Dives