Several states in the United States of America have ceased the weekly $300 federal pandemic unemployment benefits hoping that their unemployed people will now start heading back to work.
The officials of Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) pinpointed that firms that stopped the unemployment perks had an upsurge in the number of people searching for employment opportunities. Meanwhile, firms in other parts of the country are struggling to find qualified workers that they can hire. The said federal unemployment benefit will expire on the 6th of September 2021.
However, in Indiana and Maryland, judges just issued rulings requiring them to continue compensating for the unemployment brought by the pandemic. Unemployed residents in Texas have filed a lawsuit to get back the aid that ceased last June this year, and up to this day, no decision has been made.
U.S. President Joe Biden specified last month that he supports letting the enhanced unemployment benefits expire this September. He believes that it makes sense that it will expire soon since it was only a temporary boost in unemployment perks to help people who lost their jobs or who are still in the process of getting their vaccinations.
Moreover, keep in mind that the increasing cost of materials and supply chain backups badly affects the construction industry. The Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) analysis of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics noted that nonresidential construction prices increased by 24% last May 2021 compared to the previous year. The prices of lumber, natural gas, and petroleum also skyrocketed for the past twelve months.
The increase in prices will not stop anytime soon. Anirban Basu, ABC’s chief economist, highlighted that the global supply chains might become more orderly as the pandemic fades into memory. Still, the demand for inputs will be overwhelming across the globe.
Indeed, finding workers is essential, but contractors also need the construction materials delivered on time and for an affordable price if they want to remain in the market. Thus, the Associated General Contractors of America or AGC pleads with the current administration to stop paying individuals with unemployment aid to hire more qualified workers soon.