Gains in July are Limited to Residential Side as State and Local Governments and Private Owners Postpone And Cancel Upcoming Projects; Association Urges Prompt Federal Action to Make up for Revenue Losses
Construction employment increased by 20,000 jobs in July but the gains were limited to housing, while employment related to infrastructure and nonresidential building construction slipped by 4,000, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America of government data released today. Association officials cautioned that non-housing construction job losses will continue unless the federal government provides infrastructure funding for state and local budgets, enacts liability reforms and other relief measures.
“It is gratifying that the construction industry continued to add jobs in July, but last month’s gains were entirely in residential building and specialty trades,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “It is likely that many nonresidential jobs are in jeopardy following the completion of emergency projects and ones begun before the pandemic. Projects that had been scheduled to start this summer or later are being canceled by both public agencies and private owners, while few new facilities are breaking ground.”