New data from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Commercial Construction Index shows U.S. contractors are growing more optimistic as revenue expectations increase, according to www.constructiondive.com.
During the first quarter of 2021, 36% of contractors said they expect their revenue to increase during the next year compared with 11% from the last quarter of 2020. Eighty-seven percent expect their revenue to remain the same or increase compared with 86% last quarter. Additionally, 86% of contractors reported a moderate to high level of confidence the U.S. market will provide enough new business during the next year.
Forty-six percent of contractors said they will employ more people during the next six months compared with 37% from the previous quarter. Additionally, 46% expect to keep the same number of workers, and only 3% expect to reduce their staffing—down from 12% in the last quarter of 2020.
Still, the index remains 12 points below its score of 74 from the first quarter of 2020, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Contractors’ top concerns are related to the pandemic’s ongoing effects, including worker health and safety, more project shutdowns, fewer projects and reduced availability of building products.