June Saw Lowest Construction Unemployment Rate on Record Ever

September 2017

In June, the not seasonally adjusted construction unemployment rate was 4.5 percent, down 0.1 percent from a year ago and the lowest June rate on record, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. According to an analysis released on Aug. 1 by Associated Builders and Contractors, NSA construction unemployment rates were down in 31 states on a year-over-year basis, and the construction industry employed 204,000 more workers than in June 2016.
    
Because these industry-specific rates are not seasonally adjusted, national and state-level unemployment rates are best evaluated on a year-over-year basis.
    
“Not only was this the lowest national not seasonally adjusted June construction unemployment rate on record, but all the states had estimated construction unemployment rates below 10 percent,” said Bernard M. Markstein, Ph.D., president and chief economist of Markstein Advisors, who conducted the analysis for ABC. “That is an indication of the health of the construction industry, although a shortage of skilled construction workers still appears to plague the industry.”
    
Since the beginning of the data series in January 2000, the monthly movement in the national NSA construction unemployment rate from May to June has been a decrease every year except one—2010, when there was no change in the rate from May. This trend continued in 2017 with a 0.8 percent rate drop in the NSA rate from the month before. Among the states, 38 had declines in their June estimated rate from May, and two (Iowa and South Carolina) saw no change.