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AZ Unemployment Dips Slightly in October

Graph courtesy of Arizona Department of Administration

By Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Arizona’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dipped slightly in October to 6.1 percent, according to a recent report published by the Arizona Department of Administration Office of Employment and Population Statistics.

The national rate also dropped, down to 5.0 percent from 5.1.

The state had a net gain of 33,800 jobs over the month, mostly in the private sector at 30,300. Government gained 3,500. Ten of the 11 sectors tracked by the state had gains, while Natural Resources and Mining lost 400. The greatest increase came in Trade, Transportation and Utilities with an increase of 9,800 over September.

Construction gained 100 for the month for a total of 131,400. The sector has added a total of 4,700 jobs year over year.

The Construction sector features three major segments: Buildings, Heavy, and Specialty Trades. There are currently 24,400 jobs in Buildings, down 200 from September but up 900 from October 2014. Heavy Construction lost 100 from September for a total of 16,100, down 600 from October of last year. Specialty Trades added 400 over the month to 90,900, an improvement of 4,400 from this time last year.

Construction jobs in the Phoenix Metro Area (Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale) added 200 over the month, totaling 102,800. The October 2014 the number was 96,800.

Construction jobs in Metro Tucson increased to 14,900, up 100.

Yuma, Flagstaff, Prescott, Lake Havasu City-Kingman, and Sierra Vista-Douglas combine Construction and Natural Resources jobs in reporting their job sector totals. Yuma remained unchanged at 2,300. Flagstaff added 100 for a total of 2,200. Prescott stayed the same at 4,600, as did Lake Havasu-Kingman at 2,500. Sierra Vista-Douglas had 1,100, an increase of 100 for the month.

These numbers total 130,400 construction jobs for the metro areas the report tracks. According to the department’s research staff the discrepancy of 1,000 jobs between the state total and the metro area reporting totals is due to rounding.

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