Specialty trades with 500 jobs, and heavy construction with 100 jobs, also expanded payroll increases over the month.
Year-over-year, the construction sector added 2,100 jobs, an increase of 1.7%. Gains in specialty trades with 3,200 jobs, were partially offset by losses in heavy construction with 1,100 jobs. Building construction was flat.
In Arizona in April 2015, 128,000 were employed in the construction industry, 126,700 in March 105, and 125,900 in April 2014. In the Phoenix metro area, in April 2015 99,900 were employed in the construction industry, 99,600 in March 2015, and 95,700 in April 2014. In the Tucson metro area, in April 2015 15,000 were employed in the construction industry, 15,000 in March 2015 and 14,800 in April 2014.
The biggest job shedding sectors in April were the trade, transportation and utilities with 4,200 jobs, and manufacturing with 1,400 jobs. The losses in trade, transportation and utilities have not been seen since April 2009, according to the office of employment and population statistics. The post-recession trade, transportation and utilities average was a gain of 600 jobs.
The Land of Enchantment is the only state in the three-state Southwest region to have a decline in construction employment, according to a report released by the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions.
Employment within the construction industry declined by 300 jobs, from employment in March 2015. Year-over-year, New Mexico’s construction jobs have also declined, from 41,300 in April 2014 to 40,800 in April 2014.
While New Mexico’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 6.2 percent in April 2015, it is slightly up from 6.1 percent in March, yet down from 6.7 percent a year ago. According to the department of workforce solutions, sluggish employment growth has become a trend in New Mexico.
“Employment growth has been trending downward, if somewhat gradually,
since October 2012,” according to the report.