NC employment declined 7.7 percent over past year

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The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) reported North Carolina, and South Carolina experiencing large overall declines in construction employment between January 2010 and January 2011. North Carolina lost 13,900 jobs (-7.7 percent) and South Carolina lost 4,700 jobs (-5.9 percent).

Thirty-six states lost construction jobs between January 2010 and 2011, even as more states added construction jobs than lost them between December and January, according to an AGC analysis of state employment data released by the Labor Department. Association officials cautioned that despite the increase in monthly employment, the construction industry is still facing severe economic headwinds.

“It is encouraging to see more states adding jobs instead of losing them between December and January,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “Yet despite those monthly gains, we’re still a long way from seeing the kind of construction employment figures states experienced in 2006 and 2007.”

Harsh winter weather affecting much of the country in January likely contributed to some of the annual and monthly state job losses, Simonson cautioned. Among the 20 states losing construction jobs between December and January, are North Carolina (-5,100 jobs, -3.0 percent) and South Carolina (-3,600 jobs, -4.6 percent)

Association officials said the new construction employment figures indicate that more needs to be done to help the construction industry recover. They noted that the association was planning to release a comprehensive set of recommendations on March 15th designed to boost private sector demand for construction, help the nation address the infrastructure deficit and cut needless regulations and red tape.

“Allowing this industry to continue to stagnate will have significant long-term impacts on the strength of the labor market and the quality of America’s private and public buildings and infrastructure,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer.

View construction employment figures by state Here.

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