West Leads in Job Gains in October


Over the year, total nonfarm employment in October increased by 2.5 million jobs which is a 1.7% increase compared to October 2017. During this time, total nonfarm employment in the Western region increased by 2.3% and in the Southern region by 2.1%. The Midwest recorded the lowest gains at 1.4% during this time.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 40 states and the District of Columbia, decreased in seven states, and remained unchanged in Louisiana, Maine, and Wyoming in October 2018 compared to September 2018. Nationwide, total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 250,000 over the month of October, considerably higher than the increase of 118,000 jobs in September.

Year-over-year, ending in October, 49 states and the District of Columbia increased in employment while Vermont, lost payroll employment. Twenty-four states recorded annualized growth equal to and/or above 1.7% in employment, which was the national growth rate. Nevada recorded the highest growth rate at 3.4%, adding 45,800 workers during this time. Twenty-five states and the District of Columbia recorded annualized growth between 0.1%-1.6% while Vermont recorded a decline of 0.9% in employment.

In the construction sector specifically, which includes both residential and non-residential construction, across the 44 states which reported construction sector jobs data, 31 states had an increase in October, 11 states reported a decline, and Connecticut and Maine remained unchanged compared to September.  Construction sector posted a net gain of 30,000 jobs which is 0.4 percentage points higher than in September.

Year-over-year, the U.S added 330,000 construction sector jobs which is a 4.7% increase compared to October 2017. Arizona had the highest annual growth in construction sector by 12.1%. Georgia (11.6%) and Nevada (11.4%) round out the top three. Over this period, New Jersey reported the largest decline at 2.5%, followed by South Carolina (-1.7%) and Mississippi (-0.7%).

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