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Construction Job Openings Declined in May

Job openings in the construction industry declined by 6,000 in May, but are up 126,000 compared to May of last year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.

“While some will view today’s JOLTS release negatively, economic slowing is part of the process necessary to curb inflationary pressures and restore the rate of price increases to pre-pandemic norms,” says Associated Builders and Contractors Chief Economist Anirban Basu. “Contractors have seen significant pressure on their profit margins, according to the most recent data from ABC’s Construction Confidence Index, and any easing of labor shortages will provide much-needed relief.”

The Data

The construction industry registered 434,000 total job openings in May, compared to 440,000 in April. 

Construction workers quit their jobs at a faster rate than they were laid off or discharged that month, with a quits rate of 2.9 percent compared to the layoff/discharge rate of 1.4 percent. May represented the 15th consecutive month where quits outpaced or equaled layoffs and discharges.