E. Construction

2nd Quarter 2020 Report

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The indicators of Hawaii’s construction industry were mostly positive in the first quarter of 2020. Private building authorizations, construction jobs, and government contracts awarded all increased.

Construction has been one of the steady contributors to job growth in Hawaii over the past few years. In the first quarter of 2020, the number of jobs in the construction sector increased 41.9 percent or 700 jobs compared with the same quarter of 2019. In 2019, the construction sector lost 100 jobs or 0.3 percent (Table A-7) from the previous year. Before the recession, specifically the period of 2002 through 2007, construction job growth averaged 8.0 percent per year. In the fourth quarter of 2007, the average number of construction jobs reached a peak of 40,550 jobs, and then declined as the economy entered a recession. . From the second quarter of 2008 until the second quarter of 2011 quarter-over-quarter construction job growth was negative in all quarters.

In the first quarter of 2020, private building authorizations in the state increased $23.8 million or 3.1 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Table E-8). In 2019, private building authorizations in the state decreased $46.8 million or 1.4 percent compared with the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, private building authorizations in Honolulu decreased $85.5 million or 16.3 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Table E-8). In 2019, private building authorizations in Honolulu increased $77.6 million or 3.9 percent, compared with the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, private building authorizations in Hawaii County increased $39.9 million or 31.9 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Table E-8). In 2019, private building authorizations in Hawaii County decreased $26.6 million or 4.6 percent, compared with the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, private building authorizations in Maui County increased $64.6 million or 79.6 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Table E-8). In 2019, private building authorizations in Maui County decreased $76.8 million or 13.7 percent compared with the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, private building authorizations (residential only) in Kauai County increased $4.8 million or 15.7 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Table E-8). In 2019, private building authorizations in Kauai County decreased $21.1 million or 14.6 percent compared with the same period of the previous year.

Government contracts awarded increased from $155.9 million in the first quarter of 2019 to $1,342.3 million in the first quarter of 2020, which included a U.S. Navy award of a $990 million 5-year contract to 7 firms of which 2 were Hawaii firms. No per-firm awards specified. (Table E-1). State government CIP expenditures increased $22.9 million or 7.8 percent in the first quarter of 2020 compared with the same quarter of 2019 (Table E-2). In 2019, State government CIP expenditures decreased $189.0 million or 11.5 percent compared with the previous year.

The Honolulu Construction Cost Index increased 3.3 percent in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same quarter of 2019 for Single Family Residence (Table E-6) and increased 2.4 percent for High-Rise Building (Table E-7). In 2019, the index for Single Family Residence increased 3.1 percent and 2.8 percent for High-Rise Building as compared to the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, Honolulu’s median price for single family resales was $780,000, same as the price in the same quarter of 2019 (Table E-11). The median price for condominium units was $430,000, up $18,750 or 4.6 percent over the same quarter of 2019 (Table E-12). In the first quarter of 2020, the number of single-family unit resales increased 11.6 percent, and the number of condominium unit resales decreased 0.8 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2019 (Tables E-13 and E-14). In 2019, the number of single-family unit resales increased 3.9 percent, and condominium unit resales declined 4.8 percent compared with the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2020, Maui County’s single-family unit resales median price was $776,075 and the condominium unit resales median price was $550,000 (Tables E-17 and E-18).