Ken Simonson

Ken Simonson is chief economist of the Associated General Contractors of America. Ken writes a weekly one-page email newsletter for AGC, the Data DIGest, which summarizes the latest economic news relevant to construction. He is co-author of AGC's monthly Construction Tax News, a one-page email covering federal, state and local tax developments affecting the industry. In addition, he has written eight booklets explaining tax provisions in plain English, and he is interviewed often by CNBC, USA Today, Business Week and other national media.

Ken has 30 years of experience analyzing, advocating and communicating about economic and tax issues. Most recently he spent three years as senior economic advisor in the U.S. Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy. He can be reached by phone at 703/837-5313, fax: 703/837-5406 or e-mail: simonsonk@agc.org. Visit the AGC Web site at www.agc.org

ARTICLES

Construction hits three-year highs as jobs climb in January; spending rises in December

By Ken Simonson
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Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 157,000, seasonally adjusted, in January and 2,016,000 (1.5%) since January 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Feb. 1. 


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Construction starts dive, but housing sales improve

By Ken Simonson
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July brings the pace of total construction starts back to the lackluster activity reported at the outset of 2012. Separate reports from the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the National Association of Realtors and the Census Bureau showed, respectively, rising prices for existing single-family houses, rising sales and falling inventories for existing homes, and rising sales and record-low inventories of new homes.
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Construction hiring stalls, unemployment falls in June

By Ken Simonson
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The unemployment rate for former construction workers was 12.8%, not seasonally adjusted, down from 15.6% in June 2011 and 20.1% in June 2010.
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More metros lost than gained construction jobs in last 12 months

By Ken Simonson
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An AGC analysis released June 26 showed construction employment increased in 126 out of 337 areas for which BLS provides construction data (including divisions of larger metros), declined in 164 and stayed stagnant in 47.
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Construction jobs shrink in May, April construction spending rises

By Ken Simonson
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Over the past two years, construction employment was virtually unchanged but the number of unemployed hardhats fell by 605,000, suggesting workers are quitting construction, either to take jobs elsewhere, return to school, retire or otherwise leave the workforce.
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PPI jumps in March, more metros add jobs

By Ken Simonson
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The PPI for inputs to construction industries jumped 1.4% for the month, following a 0.9% gain in February, and 3.8% over 12 months.
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Half of metro areas add construction jobs

By Ken Simonson
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Half of metros add construction jobs; starts drop, MHC says; ABI stays barely favorable
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Construction employment below peak in all but eight areas; Jan. starts dip

By Ken Simonson
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The value of new construction starts fell 2%, seasonally adjusted, in January, McGraw-Hill Construction reported Feb. 21, based on data it collected.
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PPI moderates in January but some increases loom; housing starts, factory output rise

By Ken Simonson
No Comments
The PPI for inputs to construction industries rose 0.4% for the month and 4.5% over 12 months. Although higher than the finished goods PPI, the 12-month increase was the mildest for construction materials since the year ending in September 2010.
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Construction Jobs Drop In November; Census, Reed Say Spending Rose In October

By Ken Simonson
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The drop in industry unemployment, unaccompanied by a rise in construction employment, suggests workers are finding jobs in other industries, retiring, returning to school or training, or leaving the workforce. That may make hiring more difficult when construction demand picks up.
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