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Construction, Employment Improving

Over the MonthBy Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Arizona’s construction industry added 1,300 jobs in April, up 1.3% from March. Of those, 700 were in Building Construction, the highest April gain since 2005.

The Arizona Department of Administration’s Office of Employment and Population tracks 11 major employment sectors. As in March, seven of the 11 sectors showed April growth.

Overall, Arizona’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percentage point from 6.2% in March to 6.0 for April.

Unemployment in Arizona remains higher than the national average of 5.4%. Both numbers have improved year over year, however, with Arizona dropping from 6.9% and the national number from 6.2% at this time in 2014.

Among non-farm jobs, Arizona added a total of 2,200 in April, a 0.1% increase. These gains remain lower than the post-recession average of 8,100 and the 10-year average of 4,000.

The sections showing the greatest declines in April were Trade, Transportation and Utilities with losses of 4,200 jobs, the biggest loss since April of 2009, and Manufacturing at 1,400.

Over the year Construction has seen a net gain of 2,100 jobs.

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