The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Job Opening and Labor Turnover Survey shows the construction industry registered 248,000 job openings in January, which is down 240,000 from December 2022 and 148,000 from January 2022, according to www.abc.org. The survey defines a job opening as any unfilled position for which an employer is actively recruiting.
Construction workers quit their jobs at the same rate they were laid off or discharged; the quit rate and layoff/discharge rate in January were 2.2%.
“Today’s construction job openings number was simply shocking,” said Associated Builders and Contractors Chief Economist Anirban Basu. “While the total number of job openings economywide stood at a lofty 10.8 million at the end of January, meaning that there are still nearly two job openings for every unemployed American, the number of construction job openings plummeted from 488,000 in December to 248,000 just one month later, according to the JOLTS report. In other words, almost one-half of all construction job openings disappeared in a single month.
“In a nation that is set to rebuild much of its infrastructure and is operating in the megaproject era, including the construction of manufacturing facilities for computer chips, inputs to growing alternative energy industries and electric vehicles, today’s numbers seemingly defy credulity,” Basu continued. “That said, job openings figures are not broken down by residential versus nonresidential construction, and while many nonresidential contractors continue to report lengthy backlog and numerous open jobs, the single-family homebuilding segment has entered a period of significant retrenchment.”