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ABC issues news releases on the latest workforce, policy and industry issues, as well as construction-related economic data and trends. Commercial and industrial construction economic analyses include federal data on construction spending, employment, GDP and the Producer Price Index. Please note, ABC's news releases on state construction unemployment have been temporarily paused. 

In addition, ABC produces the Construction Backlog Indicator, the only economic indicator that reflects the amount of work that will be performed by commercial and industrial construction contractors in the months ahead, and the Construction Confidence Index, a diffusion index that signals construction contractors’ expectations for sales, profit margins and staffing levels. Methodology for both indicators can be found hereABC construction economic releases are published according to this schedule 



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From the category archives: Construction Economics

Construction Economics

Construction Unemployment Rose in January

Friday, February 5, 2016 11:36 AM
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 5—The U.S. construction industry’s unemployment rate rose to 8.5 percent in January, the highest level since March of 2015, according to an analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The unemployment rate across all industries shed a tenth of a percentage point and now sits at 4.9 percent, the lowest level since February of 2008. Read the rest of entry »

December Construction Unemployment Rates Improve in 32 States from 2014

Wednesday, February 3, 2016 10:00 AM
Unusually mild weather in much of the country persisted in December benefiting construction and reducing the size of the normal seasonal increase in construction unemployment rates. December marked the warmest, or one of the warmest, Decembers on record for most cities in the eastern half of the country. Not seasonally adjusted (NSA) construction unemployment rates for the country and 32 states were lower than in December 2014. The construction unemployment rates for three states—Illinois, Minnesota and Nebraska—were unchanged from a year ago. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Spending Falls Again in December

Monday, February 1, 2016 2:18 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C. Feb. 1—Nonresidential construction spending dipped for a second consecutive month, falling 0.4 percent on a monthly basis in December, according to analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Nonresidential construction spending totaled $681.2 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis. November’s nonresidential construction spending estimate was revised lower by 0.6 percent to $683.7 billion.  Read the rest of entry »

Tepid GDP Growth a Sign Construction Spending May Sputter; Decline Unlikely

Friday, January 29, 2016 12:56 PM
Real gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by just 0.7 percent (seasonally adjusted annual rate) during the fourth quarter of 2015, according to an analysis of the Bureau of Economic Analysis data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). This paltry growth follows a 2 percent increase during the year’s third quarter and a 3.9 percent increase during the second quarter. For the year, GDP expanded by 2.4 percent, matching the rate of growth seen in 2014. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Continue Free Fall in December

Friday, January 15, 2016 10:25 AM
Construction material prices fell for the sixth consecutive month in December, losing 1.2 percent on a monthly basis and 4 percent on a yearly basis according to an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics Producer Price Index released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Construction input prices have fallen 7.2 percent since peaking in August 2014, and have fallen in eleven of the previous sixteen months. Nonresidential construction input prices exhibited similar declines, falling 1.1 percent for the month and 4 percent for the year. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Employment Surges at Year’s End

Friday, January 8, 2016 11:22 AM
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 8- The U.S. construction industry showed robust growth at the end of 2015, adding 45,000 net new jobs in December and 128,000 during the fourth quarter according to analysis of today’s employment release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The construction industry’s nonresidential component added 16,400 net new jobs in December while the residential sector accounted for 23,100 and the heavy and civil engineering sector contributed 4,800. Read the rest of entry »

November Construction Unemployment Rates Improve in 37 States from 2014

Tuesday, January 5, 2016 9:12 AM
Unusually mild weather in much of the country coupled with general improvement in the nation’s economy benefited construction and consequently construction unemployment rates in November. Not seasonally adjusted (NSA) construction unemployment rates for the country and 37 states were lower than in November 2014. As of November, year-to-date seasonally adjusted (SA) employment in construction increased by 215,000 in the U.S. Meanwhile, NSA construction jobs nationally increased by 267,000 from November 2014 to November 2015. Read the rest of entry »

Nonresidential Construction Spending Slips in November; Ominous Indications in Census Bureau Report

Monday, January 4, 2016 1:16 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 4- Nonresidential construction spending dipped by 0.8 percent in November, totaling $688.1 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis, according to analysis of  U.S. Census Bureau data released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). This represents the worst monthly performance since April 2015. Moreover, October’s spending estimate was revised downward from $701.8 billion to $693.7 billion and September’s estimate was revised downward from $695 billion to $691.5 billion. Read the rest of entry »

South Records Highest Level of Construction Backlog in History

Wednesday, December 16, 2015 11:10 AM
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 16 – The backlog of commercial and industrial construction projects reached 10.3 months in the South, the highest reading in the history of the Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI), according to third-quarter results announced today by Associated Builders and Contractors. Nationally CBI remained virtually unchanged at 8.5 for the quarter, although it has declined by 3.5 year-over-year, indicating that the nonresidential construction backlog has stabilized at a high level. Read the rest of entry »

Construction Material Prices Plunge in November

Friday, December 11, 2015 11:15 AM
WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 11- Construction input prices fell for the fifth consecutive month in November according to an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Producer Price Index released today by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). Input prices fell 0.4 percent on a monthly basis and are down 4.2 percent on a year-over-year basis. Nonresidential construction prices behaved similarly, falling 0.5 percent month-over-month and 4.6 percent year-over-year. Only two of the 11 key input prices have risen since November 2014. Read the rest of entry »
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