November sees gains in US construction employment

New analysis of employment numbers from the Department of Labor done by the Associated General Contractors of America showed job growth in the construction industry in 38 states in November.

Of the 38 states, Florida added the most construction jobs in the last month with 10,600 new jobs, a 2.5 percent increase. Other states with significant gains in new construction jobs were New York (9,100 jobs, 2.5 percent), Texas (9,000 jobs, 1.3 percent), Massachusetts (4,800 jobs, 3.6 percent), South Dakota (5.6 percent, 1,300 jobs), Iowa (4.6 percent, 3,700 jobs) and Vermont (3.5 percent, 500 jobs).

Among the 12 states that lost jobs were Pennsylvania (loss of 4,600 jobs, 1.9 percent), North Carolina (loss of 4,200 jobs, 2.2 percent), Kansas (loss of 1,500 jobs, 2.3 percent), Illinois (loss of 1,500 jobs, 0.7 percent), North Dakota (loss of 1,300 jobs, 3.6 percent), Arkansas (loss of 1,300 jobs, 2.4 percent), Delaware (loss of 3.6 percent, 800 jobs) and West Virginia (loss of 2.2 percent, 600 jobs).

From November 2014 to November 2015, construction jobs climbed 4.2 percent nationally, with 44 states adding construction jobs, the highest among them being California (41,000 jobs, 5.9 percent).

“In nearly every state, contractors are busier now than a year ago,” Ken Simonson, chief economist for the association, said. “Employment is up, but the industry would be expanding even more rapidly if contractors could find enough qualified workers.”

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