Construction industry still hammered by supply chain issues

Amanda Peacher Sep 7, 2021
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Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

Construction industry still hammered by supply chain issues

Amanda Peacher Sep 7, 2021
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Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images
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This week, we’ll get quarterly results from some suppliers in the building industry. The Associated Builders and Contractors says the construction industry is losing jobs — by its analysis, down 3,000 in August. Given what we know about supply chain squeezes and shipping delays, what’s in store for the construction industry this fall?

When economist Anirban Basu from the Associated Builders and Contractors looks at those latest construction job numbers, he knows what’s to blame: “The spread of the delta variant globally has increased supply chain issues, it means higher prices for inputs, it raises the cost of delivering construction services.”

And, Basu said, some contractors are holding off on new construction until things improve. Delivery of raw materials like steel and lumber are often delayed by slowdowns at ports from China to Los Angeles.

Aldo Martinez with Industrial Metal Supply in San Diego said it feels like delays come from all directions, right now.

“Trucking issues, or like, an example: anything coming from out East right now, because of the hurricane, delays have been caused because of that,” Martinez said.

But interest rates are still low and, Basu pointed out, those rates create incentives to finance new projects.

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