Construction Employment Declines in 35 States Between January 2010 and 2011
March 14, 2011
Thirty-six states lost construction jobs between January 2010 and 2011, even as more states added construction jobs than lost them between December and January, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) reported in an analysis of state employment data released by the Labor Department.
The largest percentage drop in construction employment for the year occurred in Nevada (-12.9 percent, -8,400 jobs), followed by Georgia (-12.5 percent, -19,100 jobs); Wisconsin (-8.2 percent, -8,000 jobs); and Kentucky (-8.2 percent, 5,700 jobs). Florida lost the most construction jobs over the past 12 months (-24,000 jobs, -6.7 percent). Other states experiencing large overall declines in construction employment included Georgia; North Carolina (-13,900 jobs, 7.7 percent); and New York (-12,500 jobs, -4.0 percent).
According to Ken Simonson, AGC chief economist, 14 states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs between January 2010 and January 2011. Texas added the largest number of construction jobs for the year (33,400 jobs, 5.9 percent). Other states adding large numbers of construction jobs included Michigan (8,300 jobs, 6.8 percent); Pennsylvania (7,100 jobs, 3.3 percent); and Tennessee (4,400 jobs, 4.3 percent). Maine, meanwhile, added the highest percentage of new construction jobs (8.7 percent, 2,100 jobs), Simonson noted.
Harsh winter weather affecting much of the country in January likely contributed to some of the annual and monthly state job losses, Simonson cautioned. Among the 20 states losing construction jobs between December and January, Georgia lost the most (-6,300 jobs, -4.5 percent). Other states losing large numbers of jobs included North Carolina (-5,100 jobs, -3.0 percent) and Kansas (-4,800 jobs, -8.9 percent). Kansas lost the highest percentage of construction jobs, followed by South Dakota (-4.8 percent, -1,000 jobs) and South Carolina (-4.6 percent, -3,600 jobs).