AGC Reports that 29 States add Construction
Jobs Between March and April
May 24, 2010
Increases in stimulus-funded projects and growing demand for single-family
construction helped boost monthly construction employment in 29
states between March and April, according to a new analysis of federal
employment figures released by the Associated General Contractors
of America (AGC). Despite the recent gains, 46 states and the District
of Columbia lost construction jobs over the past twelve months.
"A gradual turnaround appears to be taking hold after years
of construction employment declines," says Ken Simonson, the
association's chief economist. "As more stimulus projects get
underway and single-family housing starts pick up, we are likely
to see the number of states with year-over-year increases grow."
Seasonally adjusted construction employment rose from March to
April in 29 states, decreased in 18 and held steady in three, plus
the District of Columbia, Simonson notes. He says that 17 of the
states with monthly increases also added construction jobs from
February to March.
Kansas experienced the highest monthly increase in construction
employment (8.7 percent, 5,000 jobs), followed by North Dakota (6.5
percent, 1,300 jobs), Wyoming (6.0 percent, 1,300 jobs), Oklahoma
(4.4 percent, 2,900 jobs) and Massachusetts (3.8 percent, 3,900
jobs). Maine (7.7 percent, 1,800 jobs) experienced the highest monthly
decline, followed by Vermont (5.7 percent, 700 jobs), Rhode Island
(4.3 percent, 700 jobs), Hawaii (3.9 percent, 1,200 jobs) and South
Carolina (3.1 percent, 2,500 jobs).
Simonson says the number of states with year-over-year job gains
rose to four, led by a jump of 8.1 percent, or 1,300 jobs, in North
Dakota. Contractors also added jobs from April 2009 to April 2010
in Kansas, which added 3,800 jobs or 6.5 percent; Alaska, with a
gain of 100 jobs or 0.6 percent; and Arkansas, with 200 jobs, or
The largest annual percentage job losses were in Nevada (28 percent,
24,300 jobs), Colorado (19 percent, 26,300 jobs), Vermont (17 percent,
2,300 jobs), Washington (16 percent, 26,800 jobs), Idaho (16 percent,
5,600 jobs) and Maine (16 percent, 4,000 jobs). The largest number
of construction job losses were in California (92,300 jobs, 14 percent),
Texas (54,400 jobs, 9 percent) and Florida (45,300 jobs, 11 percent).
Simonson says, though, the slump is not over, citing high vacancy
rates, delays in passing highway and other infrastructure legislation,
and declining state and local tax revenue. "Aside from temporary
stimulus projects and a fragile housing market, demand for new construction
remains depressed for the foreseeable future. As a result, construction
employment won't return to pre-downturn levels for many months."
Need more info and analysis about the issues?
HERE to subscribe to USGlass magazine.