ARLINGTON, VA -- Construction employment declined in 236 out of 337 metropolitan areas between September 2009 and September 2010, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released by the Associated General Contractors of America.

In addition, AGC said the number of metro areas adding jobs – 56 – matched the previous month’s data. This indicates that the the sector remains weak more than a year after the official end of the recession, association officials noted.

“The recession may have ended for the overall economy, but not for construction in most metro areas,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “Despite tremendous short-term help from the stimulus, this industry is a long way from experiencing a recovery.”

The Chicago area lost more construction jobs (-20,500 jobs, -15%) than any other metro area. Napa, CA, (-1,000 jobs, -33%) lost the highest percentage. Other areas experiencing large declines in construction employment included Las Vegas (-13,000 jobs, -22%); Los Angeles (-9,700 jobs, -9%); Houston (-9,100 jobs, -5%); Seattle (-8,500 jobs, -11%); and Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA, (-7,800 jobs, -12%).

On the up side, Columbus, OH added more construction jobs (2,200 jobs, 7%) than any other metro area while Hanford-Corcoran, CA, added the highest percentage (33% percent, 300 jobs). Other areas adding jobs included Pittsburgh, PA, (1,900 jobs, 3%); Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick, MD, (1,600 jobs, 5%); Kansas City, KS, (1,500 jobs, 8%); and Lawton, OK, (300 jobs, 18%).
Read the Associated General Contractors of America's press release.

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