Construction job growth rebounded in October as 43 states and Washington D.C. recorded employment increases from a year earlier, while 35 states added construction jobs in the past month, according to analysis of Labor Department data released by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC).
AGC officials cautioned, however, that sustaining such widespread job gains will require support at all levels of government for construction training programs.
California added the highest number of new construction jobs (+49,800 jobs, +7.3 percent) between October 2014 and October 2015. Other states adding a high number of new construction jobs for the past 12 months include New York (+21,900 jobs, +6.4 percent), Florida (+18,700 jobs, +4.6 percent) and Washington (+11,500 jobs, +7 percent). Arkansas (+18.1 percent, +8,200 jobs) added the highest percentage of new construction jobs during the past year, followed by Idaho (+12.2 percent, +4,400 jobs), Kansas (+11.7 percent, +6,900 jobs) and Nevada (+11.2 percent, +7,100 jobs).
Seven states shed construction jobs during the past 12 months. West Virginia (-17.3 percent, -5,800 jobs) lost the highest percent and total number of construction jobs. Other states that lost a high percentage of jobs for the year include Rhode Island (-5.6 percent, -900 jobs), Minnesota (-3.5 percent, -3,800 jobs), Indiana (-2.0 percent, -2,400 jobs) and New Mexico (-1.4 percent, -600 jobs). New York (7,800 jobs, 2.2 percent) added the most construction jobs between September and October.
Other states adding a high number of construction jobs include California (+7,600 jobs, +1 percent), Ohio (+5,800 jobs, +3.1 percent) and Colorado (+4,100 jobs, +2.7 percent). Idaho (+4.6 percent, +1,800 jobs) and Montana (+4.6 percent, +1,100 jobs) both added the highest percentage of construction jobs during the past month, followed by Rhode Island (+3.4 percent, +500 jobs), Hawaii (+3.3 percent, +1,100 jobs) and Ohio.
Thirteen states lost construction jobs during the past month while construction employment was unchanged in two states and the District of Columbia. Florida (-5,500 jobs, -1.3 percent) shed more construction jobs than any other state, followed by Pennsylvania (-4,200 jobs, -1.7 percent) and Minnesota (-2,200 jobs, -2.1 percent). Alaska (-4.8 percent, -900 jobs) lost the highest percentage of construction jobs between September and October, followed by West Virginia (-3.1 percent, -900 jobs) and Minnesota.