Great news on job creation last week was offset somewhat by surprising employment losses in construction. While the national economy added 165,000 jobs, construction was actually down 6,000 jobs in April. That’s the first time since October 2012 that construction saw a decline in new jobs.
Dow Jones reports that blame for April’s construction industry stumble should be left on the government’s doorstep. With various budgetary cuts at the Federal level attributed to the Sequester, funding reductions are now making their way to the state level, and adversely affecting local infrastructure projects.
Construction and Geography
Despite April’s downturn, job creation in the construction industry remains strong in numerous hotspots across the country. According to an employment data analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America, construction job totals increased in 152 out of 339 metropolitan areas from March 2012 to March 2013, declined in 126, and remained flat in 61. The AGC also noted that many metro areas are adding jobs as construction spending increased 4.8 percent ($38.9 billion) during the same 12-month period, even while dropping 1.7% from February’s monthly total.