Construction Employment Up in 36 States From August 2015 to 2016

Words: Dan KamysSeptember 20, 2016 — According to analysis of U.S. Labor Department data by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC of America), 36 states added construction jobs between August 2015 and August 2016, while construction employment increased in only 24 states between July and August. Demand for construction appears to be cooling in some markets, said association officials, but many firms are still struggling to find qualified workers to hire. California added the most construction jobs (29,300 jobs, 4.0%) between August 2015 and August 2016. Other states adding a high number of new construction jobs for the past 12 months include Florida, Colorado and Iowa. Iowa added the highest percentage of new construction jobs during the past year (18.7%), followed by Hawaii, Colorado and Idaho. Among the District of Columbia and 13 states that shed construction jobs over the year, Kansas lost the highest number and share (-4,700 jobs, -7.7%). Other states that lost jobs for the year include Alabama, North Dakota, Montana and Kentucky. Construction employment was unchanged for the year in Nebraska. Michigan added the most construction jobs between July and August (2,600 jobs, 1.8%). Other states adding a high number of construction jobs for the month include Ohio, California, Tennessee and Missouri. Wyoming added the highest percentage of construction jobs during the past month (2.4%, 500 jobs), followed by Michigan, Nevada, Missouri and Tennessee. Construction employment declined in 25 states and D.C. during the past month and held steady in Montana. New York shed more construction jobs than any other state (-4,600 jobs, -1.3%), followed by Georgia, Maryland, Arizona and Indiana. Alaska lost the highest percentage of construction jobs between July and August (-4.1%, -700 jobs), followed by Connecticut, Georgia, New Mexico, Arkansas and Arizona. Even as demand for certain types of construction projects, especially public sector projects, is slowing, there is still a lack of available workers that worries many firms. AGC of America officials urged U.S. Senators to act on a House-passed measure that would boost funding for, and make needed reforms to, career and technical school programs to encourage and prepare more students to pursue high-paying careers in construction.   For the complete analysis of the U.S. Labor Department data, visit www.agc.org.
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