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Construction Employment In January Lags Pre-Pandemic Mark In 42 States As Canceled Projects, Supply-chain Woes Threaten Future Jobs

March 15, 2021

Texas, Louisiana Have Worst Job Losses Since Pandemic Struck, While Idaho Adds the Most Jobs; California, South Carolina Have Worst One-Month Job Losses as Florida, Vermont Top Other States

Construction employment in January remained below pre-pandemic levels in all but eight states, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America of government employment data released today, while more firms have reduced headcount than have added to it in the past year, the association’s recent survey shows. Association officials said the jobs figures and survey results underscore the need for federal measures to stem future sector job losses.

“Despite improvement in many sectors of the economy, nonresidential contractors are coping with widespread project cancellations and postponements, soaring materials costs, and lengthening delivery times,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “That combination makes further job cuts likely in many states.”

The survey, which included responses from nearly 1500 firms, found 34 percent had reduced their employee count in the past year, compared to just 20 percent that had added employees. More than three-fourths of the firms had experienced project cancellations or deferrals, while only 21 percent reported winning new projects or add-ons to existing projects in the past two months.

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