Employment Situation in March: State-Level Analysis

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 36 states and the District of Columbia in March compared to the previous month, while 14 states lost jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 236,000 in March, following a gain of 326,000 jobs in February.

On a month-over-month basis, employment data was strong in Texas, which added 28,600 jobs, followed by New York (+18,100), and Massachusetts (+16,300). Fourteen states lost a total of 22,400 jobs.  In percentage terms, employment in Delaware increased by 0.5% while Alaska reported a 0.4% decline between February and March.

Year-over-year ending in March, 4.1 million jobs have been added, marking a more than full recovery of the labor market from the COVID-19 pandemic induced recession. All the states and District of Columbia added jobs compared to a year ago. The range of job gains spanned 575,100 jobs in Texas to 2,000 jobs added in West Virginia. In percentage terms, Nevada reported the highest increase by 5.0%, while West Virginia increased by 0.3% compared to a year ago.

Across the 48 states which reported construction sector jobs data—which includes both residential as well as non-residential construction— 19 states reported an increase in March compared to February, while 26 states lost construction sector jobs. Three states remained unchanged. Texas added 5,800 construction jobs, while California lost 8,200 jobs. Overall, the construction industry lost a net 9,000 jobs in March compared to the previous month. In percentage terms, Kentucky increased by 3.1% while Connecticut reported a decline of 2.9% between February and March.

Year-over-year, construction sector jobs in the U.S. increased by 196,000, which is a 2.5% increase compared to the March 2022 level. Texas added 41,200 jobs, which was the largest gain of any state, while California lost 7,300 construction sector jobs. In percentage terms, Rhode Island had the highest annual growth rate in the construction sector by 11.9%. Over this period, West Virginia reported a decline of 7.5%.


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