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Construction employers added 11,000 jobs in October, with employment in the sector reaching its highest level since December 2008, according to data from the Associated General Contractors of America.
Construction employment totaled more than 6.6 million in October, an increase of 11,000 from September and 195,000 from September 2015. Residential construction added 4,500 jobs in October and 139,700, or 5.6 percent, compared to a year ago, while nonresidential construction added 6,700 jobs for the month and gained 55,000 employees compared to October 2015, a 1.4 percent increase. Furthermore, the average hourly earnings for construction workers increased by 3.2 percent compared to a year earlier.
“There is a two-part story in construction right now as private-sector demand continues to boost employment while declining public-sector demand is contributing to year-over-year declines in heavy and civil engineering construction,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “Overall construction employment would certainly be higher if local, state and federal officials were investing more to build new and repair aging infrastructure.”