Construction jobs lost in 9 NC metros

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Construction employment declined in 9 North Carolina metropolitan areas between October 2011 and October 2012, increased in one, and was stagnant in 3, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released by the Associated General Contractors of America.

“These figures show how spotty the construction recovery has been—even within a single state,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “If  taxes hump and federal construction spending is slashed next month, even more metros will have construction job losses.”

The largest job losses were in the area of the state around Virginia Beach and Norfolk-Newport News.  This area lost 2,200 construction jobs. The Raleigh-Cary metro lost 1,900 jobs (- 6 percent). . Other areas experiencing declines in construction employment included Wilmington (-9 percent, -800 jobs), Asheville (-9 percent, -700), Durham-Chapel Hill (-4 percent, -300 jobs) and Winston-Salem (-2 percent, -200 jobs).

Burlington, Greenville and Rocky Mount all lost 100 construction jobs between October 2011 and October 2012.  Only Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill reported job increases (2 percent, 600 jobs).  Construction employment was stagnant in Fayetteville, Greensboro-High Point and Hickory-Lenoir, Morganton since last October.  Statewide North  Carolina lost 5,800 construction jobs between October 2011 and October 2012.

Association officials cautioned that even more metro areas could experience construction job losses if Congress and the administration allow the spending cuts and tax hikes that make up the fiscal cliff to occur. “Allowing the fiscal cliff to occur will only make our nation’s fiscal problems worse,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer. “Construction workers can ill afford the kind of recession that the fiscal cliff would cause.” View construction employment figures by state and rank.

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