Job Growth Continues to be Strong Across Most States at the Start of 2024

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 42 states and the District of Columbia in January compared to the previous month, while eight states saw a decrease. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 229,000 in January, following a gain of 290,000 jobs in December.

On a month-over-month basis, employment data was most favorable in New York, which added 59,300 jobs, followed by California (+58,100), and then Florida (+38,800). A total of 17,100 jobs were lost across eight states, with Oregon reporting the steepest job losses at 4,900. In percentage terms, employment in Vermont increased the highest at 0.6%, while South Dakota saw the biggest decline at 0.4% between December and January.

Year-over-year ending in January, 2.8 million jobs have been added to the labor market. Except for Oregon and Illinois, all other states and the District of Columbia added jobs compared to a year ago. The range of job gains spanned from 2,200 jobs in Vermont to 263,900 jobs in Texas. Conversely, Oregon and Illinois lost a total of 11,500 jobs on a year-over-year basis. In percentage terms, Nevada reported the highest increase at 3.8%, while Oregon showed the largest decrease at 0.2% compared to a year ago.

Across the nation, construction sector jobs data[1]—which includes both residential and non-residential construction— showed that 32 states reported an increase in January compared to December, while 17 states lost construction sector jobs. The remaining two, Missouri and the District of Columbia reported no change on a month-over-month basis. North Carolina, with the highest increase, added 4,000 construction jobs, while Illinois, on the other end of the spectrum, lost 5,300 jobs. Overall, the construction industry added a net 19,000 jobs in January compared to the previous month. In percentage terms, Hawaii, Mississippi, and Arkansas reported the highest increase at 2.3% and Illinois reported the largest decline at 2.3%.

Year-over-year, construction sector jobs in the U.S. increased by 218,000, which is a 2.8% increase compared to the January 2023 level. California added 44,600 jobs, which was the largest gain of any state, while New York lost 12,000 construction sector jobs. In percentage terms, South Dakota had the highest annual growth rate in the construction sector at 11.3%. Over this period, the District of Columbia reported the largest decline of 5.1%.

[1] For this analysis, BLS combined employment totals for mining, logging, and construction are treated as construction employment for the District of Columbia, Delaware, and Hawaii.


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One thought on “Job Growth Continues to be Strong Across Most States at the Start of 2024

  1. With robust employment, there’s likely increased demand for both residential and commercial construction projects. Construction loans could play a pivotal role in financing these ventures as developers seek to capitalize on favorable economic conditions to fuel their expansion and development plans.

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