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SD construction employment grows 8 percent over last year

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San Diego County construction employment made significant gains in November as month-to-month and year-to-year comparisons showed increased job growth, according to the latest data by the state Employment Development Department.

There were 62,100 construction jobs last month, a boost of 500 jobs or 0.8 percent in October and 5,300 more jobs or 8 percent than in November 2012.

Of the 62,100 local construction jobs in November, 42,600 were specialty trade contractors; 13,600 were general contractors; and 5,900 were heavy and civil engineers.

Heavy and civil engineering contractors were the only subconstruction category where employment dropped from October to November, with a reduction of 100 jobs.

General contractors had no employment change from October to November, and specialty trade contractors rose by 600 jobs.

Of the 42,600 specialty trade contractors, 17,500 were building equipment contractors, 11,400 were from building finishers, 8,700 were involved with building foundation and exterior work, and 5,000 were residual or other specialty trade contractors.

California’s construction employment in November was at 635,700 jobs, a gain of 31,200 — almost 5 percent — from November 2012.

Construction employment expanded in 211 of 339 metro areas around the country, but declined in 67 and was stagnant in 61 areas between November 2012 and November 2013, according to data analyzed by the Associated General Contractors of America.

In the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario metro area, construction employment rose by 2,100 jobs — a bit more than 3 percent — from a year ago to 63,200 in November 2013.

The Orange County reported 82,300 construction jobs last month, an increase of 8,200 or 10 percent from the same time last year.

Los Angeles County gained 9,100 jobs — 7.5 percent — from last year to this year, with a total of 120,900 construction jobs last month.

Stephen Sandherr, the association’s CEO, said these employment gains were encouraging, but cautioned that future gains were dependent on continued economic growth and new investments in aging domestic infrastructure.

“Construction employment continued to expand in many parts of the country in November, but most areas have a long way to go before reaching prior peak levels,” Sandherr said in a statement. “It will take many more months of strong economic growth and new investments in public infrastructure before many places experience construction employment levels close to their prior peaks.”

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