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The latest examination of construction employment in U.S. metro areas is out from the Associated General Contractors of America. After analyzing federal employment figures, the AGC found that construction employment declined in 151 out of 337 metropolitan areas between November 2011 and November 2012.
Hiring was stagnant in 60 of those areas while 126 saw jobs added.
The New York and New Jersey metro areas suffered particularly despite the need for reconstruction in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. In a prepared statement AGC chief economist Ken Simonson said the lack of hiring nationally was due to uncertainty about federal tax and spending rates in 2013. The New York and New Jersey areas were negatively affected by work stoppage due to Sandy, he said.
The Nassau-Suffolk, New York metro lost the most jobs with 6,900 jobs cut between November 2011 and November 2011. The Las Vegas-Paradise metro was next, losing 5,200 jobs, followed by Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, Illinois at 4,500 jobs.
With a loss of 24 percent (2,300) of its jobs, the Springfield, Massachussetts-Connecticut metro lost the highest percentage of jobs. Jackson, Mississippi was next, losing 24 percent (2,400), followed by Columbus, Indiana losing 19 percent (300).
Of those areas that added jobs, the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, Texas metro added the most with 15,300. Next was Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas at 6,900 and the Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, Massachusetts metro with an addition of 6,800 jobs.
Pascagoula, Mississippi added the highest percentage of construction jobs at 31 percent (1,500). Haverhill-North Andover-Amesbury, Massachusetts-New Hampshire was next at 18 percent (700), followed by El Centro, California with an addition of 15 percent (200).