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Construction employment increased in 33 states between November and December, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) of Labor Department data. Additionally, employment increased in half the nation last year.
Association officials noted that contractors responding to a recent survey expect to add more workers in 2013.
In 2012, 24 states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs, 24 decreased employment and two—Vermont and West Virginia—had no change. Nebraska had the highest percentage of new construction jobs at an increase of 10.1 percent, or 4,100 new jobs; the District of Columbia saw a 7.3-percent increase, adding 900 jobs; Texas construction employment increased by 6.6 percent, or 36,800 new jobs; Hawaii increased by 6.5 percent, adding 1,800 jobs; and Washington’s construction workforce increased by 6.5 percent, or 9,000 new jobs. Texas added the most new construction jobs over the past 12 months, followed by California–which added 24,500 jobs, a 4.4-percent increase)–Washington and Arizona.
Rhode Island lost the highest percentage of construction jobs at a 6.7-percent loss, a decrease of 1,100 jobs; Delaware lost 5.8 percent of its construction employment, a decrease of 1,100 jobs; Mississippi saw a 5.6-percent loss, or 2,700 less jobs; and Arkansas lost 5.6 percent of its construction employment, a loss of 2,600 jobs. Illinois lost the most jobs at 8,600, a 4.5-percent decrease; Pennsylvania lost 7,700 jobs, a decrease of 3.4 percent; and Florida lost 16,800 jobs, a 2.1-percent decrease.
While 33 states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs between November and December, employment decreased in 16 states. Utah had no change in construction employment over the month. Wisconsin had the largest percentage increase at 5.8 percent, or 4,900 new jobs; the District of Columbia saw a 3.9-percent increase, or 500 jobs; and New Jersey’s construction employment increased by 3.6 percent, or 4,300 jobs.
Rhode Island had the steepest percentage drop at 5.6 percent, or 900 lost jobs; Montana saw a 4.1-percent decrease, or 1,000 jobs; and Minnesota’s construction workforce decreased by 3.6 percent, or 3,500 jobs. Texas lost the largest number of jobs for the month at 4,100 jobs, or a decrease of 0.7 percent; followed by Florida at a loss of 3.500 jobs, or a 1.1-percent decrease, and Minnesota.