Construction sector a strong point of U.S. jobs report

ConstructionWhile September’s employment report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed a slowing down of the country’s employment gains, it also highlighted which industries are poised to lift the nation from its currently stagnant job numbers. MarketWatch reported that the construction and housing sector’s robust figures will likely fuel employment growth and prevent the U.S. unemployment rate from ticking upward.

The source explained that growth in the building trades field, which includes professions like roofers and carpenters, was up by 3.6 percent at the end of August compared to 12 months earlier. During the same time frame, growth among housing-related jobs was also up by 3.6 percent. The source noted that these rates exceed the 2.4 percent total non-farm job growth rate. They are direct results of a 17 percent increase in housing starts, noted the source, a number that reached 1.13 million at the end of this summer.

Within the construction industry, the unemployment rate dropped from 6.1 percent in August to 5.5 percent in September, reported the Engineering News-Record. Septembers’s average not only showed significant improvements from a year earlier, when the sector’s unemployment rate was 7 percent, but it was also the lowest jobless number the industry has seen in 15 years.

Overall, 8,000 construction jobs were added to the economy in September, which helped offset losses sustained in the mining field, explained MarketWatch. Although the mining sector lost a number of high-paying, top-tier jobs, construction created many similarly lucrative positions. Because there is a lot of crossover between these two sectors, many former mining professionals have been able to secure some of the construction field’s new jobs.

Construction workers who went to the oil and mining fields in the past years are moving back,” said Selma Hepp, chief economist at, in an interview.