The March 2018 not seasonally adjusted (NSA) national construction unemployment rate was down 1% from March 2017, and estimated construction unemployment rates also fell in 37 states on a year-over-year basis, according to an analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), Washington, DC.
The national unemployment rate was 7.4 percent, the lowest national March rate on record. At the same time, the construction industry employed 246,000 more workers than in March 2017.
“Demand for construction workers in March continued to be strong despite the usual wild spring weather in parts of the country,” said Bernard M. Markstein, Ph.D., president and chief economist of Markstein Advisors, who conducted the analysis for ABC. “Healthy demand for construction workers is most noticeable in the demand for skilled construction workers. However, recent building materials price increases, particularly for steel and aluminum, present the greatest threat to continued strong growth of construction activity and employment.”
The states with the lowest estimated NSA construction unemployment rates in order from lowest to highest were Colorado and Iowa (tie at 4.1%), Nebraska (4.3%), Virginia (4.4%), and Idaho (4.6%).
The states with the highest NSA construction unemployment rates in order from lowest to highest were New Mexico (11.1%), Montana (11.8%), West Virginia (11.9%), Rhode Island (14.1%) and Alaska (22.2%).
For more on the study, visit Associated Builders and Contractors: Background on State Construction Unemployment Rates