Economic forecast shows an increase in construction employment across the state

Through 2018, a new economic forecast says construction employment is expected to be the fastest growing sector of Nebraska’s economy.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Bureau of Business Research said in a report, released Monday, that construction employment will reach a state record this year and continue growing through 2018. The report also says that in 2018, over 55,000 people will be working in construction across the state.

That’s a 9.5 percent increase from its pre-Great Recession peak of 50,500 in 2007.

The boost in numbers is driven in part by an infusion of tax dollars for roads. Moderate growth for Nebraska’s economy as a whole is seen in the report.

Agriculture and machinery manufacturing are expected to be the weak spots. Lower crop and livestock prices have placed pressure on the state’s machinery manufacturers.