Construction employment grew in 218, or 61 percent, out of 358 metro areas between March 2018 and March 2019, declined in 83 (23 percent) and was unchanged in 57, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released by the Associated General Contractors of America.
Federal data on construction spending showed mixed results, as a steep decline in single-family homebuilding offset increases in multifamily and nonresidential construction.
“Construction spending totaled $1.282 trillion in March, down 0.9 percent from February and down 0.8 percent from March 2018,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “However, the yearly decline was confined to single-family homebuilding, which fell by 8.4 percent over 12 months. At the same time, new multifamily construction spending jumped by 11 percent, private nonresidential spending increased by 2.1 percent and public construction spending rose 8.6 percent. The record 286,000 job openings at the end of February shows there were still plenty of projects needing workers in March.”
The Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Arizona metro area added the most construction jobs during the past year (13,800 jobs, 11 percent). Other areas included Atlanta-Sandy Springs Roswell, Georgia (7,600 jobs, 6 percent); and Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (7,400 jobs, 5 percent). The largest percentage gain occurred in Monroe, Michigan (26 percent, 500 jobs), followed by Chico, California (22 percent, 800 jobs); and St. Cloud Minnesota (18 percent, 1,000 jobs).
The largest job losses between March 2018 and 2019 occurred in Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, Illinois (-3,100 jobs, -3 percent), followed by Kansas City, Kansas (-2,000 jobs, -10 percent); and Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine, California (-2,000 jobs, -2 percent).