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Instant Reaction: December Jobs Report

The following is NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun’s reaction to this morning’s U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report on December employment conditions:

“The job market continues to improve, but at a decelerating pace. The year 2017 ended with 2.1 million net new job additions, a very solid rate. However, the gains had been 2.6 million, 2.9 million, and 2.5 million in the three preceding years. More jobs and more income for households definitely attest to the rising housing demand.

As to the supply of homes, construction workers are needed. In 2017, a net 190,000 new workers were employed in the construction industry, and that also marks a decelerating trend, as the prior three years averaged 284,000 annual additions. With the unemployment rate in the construction industry having fallen from over 20% in 2010 to 5.9% at the year-end of 2017, there could be a little growth to home construction despite the on-going housing shortage. There needs to be serious consideration in allowing temporary work visas until American trade schools can adequately crank out much needed, domestic skilled construction workers.”