Louisiana construction employment drops most in U.S.


Construction employment in February remained below pre-pandemic levels in all but six states, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America of government employment data released March 26, while soaring materials costs and supply-chain problems threaten future employment.

Louisiana had the worst construction job losses since the pandemic began, with the state’s seasonally adjusted construction employment in February down by 20,400 jobs, or nearly 15%, compared to February of 2020, according to the AGC. In fact, Louisiana experienced the largest percentage loss of any state, followed by Wyoming (-14%), New Jersey, New York, and West Virginia (-9%).

“Today’s figures show most states are still far from recovering the construction jobs lost a year ago,” says Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “The overall economy is recovering, but huge price spikes and ever-lengthening delivery times threaten to set construction back further.”

Seasonally adjusted construction employment in February 2021 was lower than in February 2020 in 44 states and the District of Columbia. Texas lost the most construction jobs over the period (-56,400 jobs or -7%). Only six states added construction jobs from February 2020 to February 2021. Utah added the most jobs (6,700 jobs, 5.9%), trailed by Idaho (4,500 jobs, 8.2 %) and Arkansas (900 jobs, 1.7%). Read the full report.