Industry News

Construction, mortgage sectors hardest-hit by layoffs

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The downturn in the housing market appears to have caused more layoffs in construction and mortgage lending than real estate sales, the Mortgage Bankers Association reports. In a new analysis, "Trends in Housing-Related Employment," MBA researchers say that 45,000 residential housing construction jobs were eliminated in 2006, while employment in the mortgage lending industry in March was down by 19,000 jobs from a year ago. Meanwhile, industries related to home sales experienced a net job gain averaging 6,900 a month in 2006, the MBA reports. MBA researchers expect housing starts and home sales will "continue to moderate well into the first half of the year, reaching their troughs around the end of the third quarter or the beginning of the fourth." Housing related employment will continue to decline in 2007, but should moderate, rather than endanger, job growth for the country as a whole, the report said. Nonfarm payroll gains totaled 2.3 million in 2006, with the unemp...