Construction Sector Job Openings Reach Five-Year High in October


Eye on Housing

The number of unfilled construction sector positions (124,000) reached a five-year high according to the October BLS Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS).

While the increase in unfilled positions in 2013 is consistent with the increase in construction sector activity, particularly for home building, the data continue to reflect only modest growth in total employment thus far. The rise in the count of open positions is thus consistent with reports of local labor shortages.

For the construction sector, monthly gross hiring ticked up, rising from 299,000 to 307,000 from September to October. The hiring rate, as measured on a 3-month moving average basis, was  unchanged at 5.2%. The pace of construction hiring has slowed since the end of 2012, and this trend has continued into the fall of 2013.

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Consistent with reports of some labor shortages for builders, the number of open, unfilled positions in the construction industry reached a five-year high. The total of unfilled positions in the sector…

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