Nonresidential specialty contractors continue to shed jobs despite unemployment decline in overall construction market
Construction employers added 1,000 jobs in August while the industry's unemployment rate fell to 11.3 percent, according to an analysis of new federal data released, Sept. 7, by the Associated General Contractors of America. The unemployment declines come as the construction industry continues to shrink, association officials noted, adding that more than 214,000 workers have left the industry since August 2011.
"While we all breathe a sigh of relief any time the sector adds jobs, these numbers are hardly cause for celebration," said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association's chief executive officer, in a release. "If it wasn't for the fact that the housing sector is finally on the mend, construction employment would be heading in the wrong direction."
The construction employment gains for the past month and past year have largely come from the residential sector, according to AGC. Nonresidential construction employment declined by 6,000 in August and is down by 6,400 for the year, while nonresidential specialty trade contractors lost 6,400 jobs for the month and 18,900 for the year.