The number of unfilled jobs in the construction industry hit a post-recession high in August 2018, but the September count reveals more positions were filled.
Based on Bureau of Labor Statistics' data and analysis by the National Association of Home Builders, open construction jobs were 278,000 in September 2018, a 12.3 percent monthly decline. The share of open positions relative to total employment plus current openings was 3.7 percent in September, up fro 2.5 percent in September 2017. The seasonally-adjusted annual rate was 3.3 percent. Prior to the recession during the construction boom, the rate was 2.7 percent.
The overall trend for open construction jobs has been increasing since the end of the Great Recession. This is consistent with survey data indicating that access to labor remains a top business challenge for builders.The construction sector hiring rate, as measured on a twelve-month moving average basis, held steady at 5 percent in September. The twelve-month moving average for layoffs was also stable at 2.3 percent. The trend for layoffs has been decreasing as the labor market tightens.