According to Ken Simonson, chief economist for the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the construction industry’s current unemployment rate could indicate that construction workers are beginning to leave the industry rather than searching for new work within their fields of expertise. “Losing so many seasoned workers will make it harder for the industry to bounce back when demand finally increases,” Simonson said in an AGC press release at the beginning of September.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’s figures indicate that the construction industry’s unemployment rate for August 2011 is at 13.5 percent. This is down from 17% in August 2010 and 16.5 percent in August of 2009; still, with the nation’s total unemployment rate at 9.1 percent for August 2011, the construction industry’s unemployment figures clearly indicate that the sector is struggling disproportionately, and it is likely that skilled workers will continue to look for employment elsewhere. This means that contractors may find themselves with a worker shortage when the economy rebounds.
To learn more, read the AGC press release at http://www.agc.org/cs/news_media/press_room/press_release?pressrelease.id=907.