Construction News: No Construction Job Growth in an April that Delivered Only a Quarter of Economists’ Forecasts

Institutional building rebound lifts Dodge Construction Index in April, panic over the global lumber shortage pushed July futures for 2x4s to $1,481, a crack shut down the Desoto Bridge carrying I-40 across the Mississippi River. The April monthly report from the U.S. Labor Department is confusing by most standards. The economy added 266,000 jobs, while economists had been predicting a million. Construction gained no jobs in the month, although the unemployment rate compared to March this year and last remained at 6.1%. The Bureau of Labor Statistics stat shows construction employment at 7.4 million – flat compared with March – and total employment in the industry was down by 196,000 from February of 2020. Some segments such as home building and infrastructure posted the best numbers. Shortages of building materials, higher prices and a lack of workers is hampering contractors trying to keep abreast of the situation.   READ FULL ARTICLE >>