In a troubling sign for construction, the industry’s unemployment rate showed no improvement in June after three straight monthly declines as the industry lost 22,000 jobs during the month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.

Construction Unemployment Rate Flat As Industry Loses 22,000 Jobs in June

The bureau’s employment report for June, released on July 2, showed that construction’s jobless rate for the month was 20.1%, the same as May’s level, but worse than the June 2009’s 17.4%.

Anirban Basu, the Associated Builders and Contractors’ chief economist, says, for construction, “it is clear that this represents another disappointing jobs report.”

The total number of construction unemployed fell from 2.44 million in February to 1.76 million in May as the construction building season gained momentum. However, in June, the number of unemployed workers in construction increased unexpectedly to 1.79 million.

It is only the second time in the past 11 years that unemployment went up between May and June.