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Construction employment increases in June

Construction employment increased by 13,000 jobs in June following an increase of 25,000 jobs in May, according to www.agc.org.

The construction industry unemployment rate stayed the same at 4.7 percent from June to a year ago in June. Construction employers have added 282,000 new jobs during the past year, reaching a 10-year high.

"The construction industry continues to add workers faster than the economy as a whole, and the industry is paying premium wages to attract and retain those workers," says Ken Simonson, chief economist of the Associated General Contractors of America. "The employment gains are occurring in both residential and nonresidential construction. However, the industry is having to rely more and more on workers without construction experience, as the pool of unemployed construction workers has nearly evaporated."

Hourly earnings in the industry averaged $29.71 in June, an increase of 2.9 percent from 2017. The average hourly earnings in construction is 10.1 percent higher than the average for all nonfarm private-sector jobs, which rose to $26.98.

"The steps Congress and the Trump administration have taken to create a more positive business environment and boost employment appear to be working," said Stephen E. Sandherr, chief executive officer of the Associated General Contractors of America. "But new trade disputes and chronic underfunding of career and technical education programs pose a real threat to continued employment gains in the sector."


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