$30/Hour Wage Rate for Construction Workers, But Supply Stays Flat

A strong economy is powering commercial and residential construction across the U.S., but the available labor pool is flat to dwindling, even as hourly wage rates hit $30. Many contractors are struggling to find or retain qualified workers, according to JLL’s report: “Construction Outlook United States/Q3 2016.”

“Following the recession in 2008,” according to the report, “many construction workers left the industry in search of jobs in other fields, and have chosen not to return. Today, contractors are in a booming construction period, but can’t find the skilled labor to keep up.”

The report states that contractors are working with a smaller pool of labor today – 23.0 percent smaller than in 2007 – and signs point to a continued leveling out.

“With no shortage of job openings, a bidding war for workers has opened up. The smaller labor pool combined with 4.5 percent unemployment in the industry, the lowest point in 10 years, is turning construction labor into a driving cost in construction pricing,” the report concludes.

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