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Construction Jobs By State: Half Up,
Half Down

Construction employment continues to stagger on; half of the states across the nation added jobs between June 2011 and June 2012, the other half shed workers.

Improvement in construction jobs remains uneven at best, according to Labor Department reports on June employment.

Work increased in 25 states and the District of Columbia from June 2011 to June 2012, but declined in a slim majority of states in the past month, according to analysis the Associated General Contractors of America.

''The latest state data show again how fragile and fragmentary the construction recovery is,'' said Ken Simonson, the AGC's chief economist. ''Although private sector demand for structures has risen in most states, improvement in single-family homebuilding is spotty and public investment is shrinking.''

Washington D.C. added the highest percentage of new construction jobs for the year (17.8 percent, 2,100 jobs), followed by North Dakota (16.2 percent, 3,800 jobs) and Montana (14.6 percent, 3,300 jobs).

Less positively, only 18 states (and D.C.) added construction jobs between May and June, while employment in the industry decreased in 27 states and was static in five. Texas added the most jobs during the month (9,600, 1.7 percent), followed by California (8,100, 1.4 percent) and Ohio (3,500, 2.0 percent). The highest percentage gains for the month were reported in D.C. (7.8 percent, 1,000 jobs), North Dakota (2.6 percent, 700 jobs) and Montana (2.4 percent, 600 jobs).

California added the most new construction jobs over the past 12 months (27,200, 5.0 percent), ahead of Texas (24,400, 4.4 percent) and Arizona (11,200, 10.2 percent). Alaska lost the highest percentage of jobs in the past year (-20.5 percent, -3,200 jobs), followed by Wisconsin (-11.1 percent, -10,200 jobs) and Mississippi (-9.7 percent, -4,700 jobs). Florida shed the most jobs (-24,600, -7.4 percent), more than double the losses in New York (-12,500, -4.1 percent), and Wisconsin and Illinois (-9,900, -5.1 percent).

The largest number of construction job losses in June occurred in Florida (-5,300, -1.7 percent), followed by Iowa and Massachusetts (-2,100, -2.0 percent). South Dakota took the highest-percentage hit among states that lost construction jobs for the month (-5.2 percent, -1,100 jobs), leading Arkansas (-3.7 percent, -1,700 jobs) and Iowa (-3.4 percent, -2,300 jobs).

The AGC warned that more funding cuts for public infrastructure projects would likely do further harm to the construction industry, which has been one of the hardest-hit since the recession began.

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October 13, 2019, 7:05 pm PDT

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