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Unemployment Down, Construction Gains

Graph courtesy of Arizona Department of Administration

By Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Arizona’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dipped slightly in November to 6.0 percent, according to a recent report published by the Arizona Department of Administration Office of Employment and Population Statistics.

The national rate was unchanged at 5.0.

The state had a net gain of 29,800 non-farm jobs over the month. Most gains were in the private sector, which added 27,100. Government gained 2,700. Nine of the 11 sectors tracked by the state had gains, while Financial Services dropped 500 and Natural Resources and Mining lost 100. Trade, Transportation and Utilities saw the largest gain, up 14,600 over October.

Construction gained 1,600 for the month for a total of 133,300. The sector has added a total of 6,900 jobs over the year.

The Construction sector features three major segments: Buildings, Heavy, and Specialty Trades. There are currently 24,100 jobs in Buildings, down 400 from October but up 1,100 from November 2014. Heavy Construction lost 200 from September for a total of 16,000, down 1,100 from November of last year. Specialty Trades added 2,200 over the month to 93,200, increasing 6,900 from this time last year.

Construction jobs in the Phoenix Metro Area (Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale) added 1,900 over the month, totaling 104,800. The November 2014 the number was 96,900.

Construction jobs in Metro Tucson are up 100 to 15,000.

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 lost 100 for a total of 2,100. Prescott stayed the same at 4,600, as did Lake Havasu-Kingman at 2,500 and Sierra Vista-Douglas at 1,100.

(Note: Discrepancy between the listed total (133,300) and the total found by adding the metro area counts (132,400) are attributed to rounding in the published metro totals.)

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