By Tasha Anderson for AZBEX
Arizona’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 5.5 percent in March 2020, from February 2020, according to the latest report published by the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity.
The national rate increased to 4.4 percent from 3.5 percent in February. In March 2019, the state had a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.8 percent, and the national was at 3.8 percent.
The state had a net loss of 7,400 non-farm jobs over the month. “Historically (2010-2019), Nonfarm employment has averaged a gain of 10,900 jobs in March,” the report states. Trade, Transportation & Utilities had the largest net gain of jobs with 2,800, followed by Education and Health Services with 1,700. Of the 11 sectors tracked, Manufacturing had the smallest net gain with 100 jobs. Construction lost 600 jobs over the month and Leisure & Hospitality had the largest net loss at 5,200.
Education and Health Services in Arizona took the top spot in job gains from March 2019 to March 2020 with a total of 23,700, while Trade, Transportation & Utilities came in second with 14,900. Construction came in third with 6,800.
The Construction sector features three major segments: Buildings, Heavy, and Specialty Trades. There are currently 37,100 jobs in Buildings, which increased by 100 from February 2020 and increased 3,400 from March 2019. Heavy Construction gained 200 over the month for a total of 21,200 and is up 1,300 from March 2019. Specialty Trades decreased 900 for the month at 115,500, and the segment added 2,100 over the year.
Construction jobs in the Phoenix Metro Area (Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale) decreased 1,200 over the month for a total of 136,400. The March 2019 number was 131,500.
The Metro Tucson construction jobs lost 100 from February for a total of 17,900 and increased by 400 from March 2019.
Yuma, Flagstaff, Prescott, Lake Havasu City-Kingman and Sierra Vista-Douglas combine Construction and Natural Resources jobs in reporting their job sector totals. Yuma, Prescott, Lake Havasu City-Kingman and Sierra Vista-Douglas remained at 3,100, 6,200, 3,400 and 1,900 respectively for the month. Flagstaff gained 100 for a total of 2,400 for the month.