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Nonresidential Building Construction Employment Takes Another Hit

The construction industry may have added 20,000 jobs on net last month, but July's nonresidential construction employment dwindled. July's job loss affected nonresidential construction by 4,000 jobs, with nonresidential building taking the biggest hit with its loss of 9,300 jobs.

Despite some of the losses, there was some highlights in the industry, particularly in nonresidential specialty trade contractors as well as heavy and civil engineering, which gained 3,500 jobs and 1,800 jobs, respectively.

"For several weeks, contractors have noted an increase in project postponements and cancellations due to coronavirus impacts," ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu said in a press release. "July data reflect this reality, as many of the postponed or cancelled projects are in categories such as office, lodging and retail. Correspondingly, employment in the nonresidential building segments declined by more than 9,000 positions in July."

However, Basu noted, nonresidential construction spending doesn't appear "favorable for the next year," as the pandemic continues to impact commercial buildings such as restaurants, storefronts and offices.

—Andrew Michaels, editorial associate

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Sunday, 20 September 2020