Construction employment expanded in 249 metro areas, declined in 56 and was stagnant in 53 between March 2014 and March 2015, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released today by the Associated General Contractors of America.
AGC officials said the new data comes as many firms remain worried about tightening labor markets and declining public-sector investments in infrastructure and other projects.
Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, Wash. added the largest number of construction jobs in the past year (12,400 jobs, 17 percent), followed by Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colo. (11,400 jobs, 13 percent), Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas (8,600 jobs, 4 percent) and Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (8,400 jobs, 7 percent). The largest percentage gains occurred in Wenatchee, Wash. (33 percent, 600 jobs), Merced, Calif. (25 percent, 400 jobs), Atlantic City-Hammonton, N.J. (23 percent, 1,000 jobs) and Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas. (22 percent, 3,900 jobs).
The largest job losses from March 2014 to March 2015 were in New Orleans-Metairie, La. (-3,300 jobs, -11 percent), followed by Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, Miss. (-1,800 jobs, -17 percent), Cleveland-Elyria, Ohio (-1,600 jobs, -5 percent), and Nassau County-Suffolk County, N.Y. (-1,200 jobs, -2 percent). The largest percentage decline for the past year was in El Centro, Calif. (-22 percent, -700 jobs) followed by Weirton-Steubenville, W.Va.-Ohio (-19 percent, -400 jobs), Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, Miss. and Santa Fe N.M. (-15 percent, -400 jobs).