The U.S. jobs report for October was released this morning and the construction industry had one of its best months all year. According to the report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the construction industry added 31,000 jobs in October. This was the most jobs added for a single month so far this year, matching the number of jobs added in February. September’s numbers were revised up from 8,000 jobs added to 12,000 jobs added in the latest report. August’s total number of jobs added improved from 5,000 to 8,000. The construction industry added 159,000 jobs in 2015. Over the past 12 months the industry has grown by 233,000 jobs.
The unemployment rate for the construction industry rose from 5.5% in September to 6.2% in October, closer to the 6.1% in reported for August. Nonresidential building was the only section to shed jobs, losing 1,000 jobs in October. Jobs for nonresidential specialty trade contractors were the driving force behind the big job growth in October, rising by 21,000 jobs.
ADP, the Human Capital Management firm, released their jobs report on Wednesday, had the construction industry adding 35,000 jobs in October. ADP’s numbers show the construction industry has added 246,000 jobs in 2015 and 304,000 jobs over the last 12 months. They made no adjustments to any prior months’ numbers.
ADP reports that total construction employment is at 6,530,000 jobs compared to 6,434,000 reported by the BLS. The gap between total construction employment numbers for the BLS and ADP shrank a bit with the latest releases. The difference is only 96,000 jobs.
This is good news for the construction industry. Construction spending has returned to pre-recession numbers this year, but job growth hasn’t caught back up quite yet. When construction spending as topping $1 trillion as it is now, construction employment was northward of 7 million jobs. There’s still a bit of work to do for construction firms who are having an increasingly tough time finding workers.