Residential construction jobs slow in April

Despite an overall increase in construction industry jobs, residential building jobs suffered a drop
Growth in residential trades jobs resulted in a net gain of just 600.

The construction industry added 33,000 jobs in April, according to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Over the past 12 months, the industry has added 256,000 jobs.

[Related: March construction jobs bounce back after disappointing February]

However, those gains were heavily concentrated among nonresidential specialty trades. Over 25,000 jobs in April were among specialty trade contractors, 88% of which were in nonresidential trades. Almost a third of new jobs were in heavy construction.

As a matter of fact, residential building was the only subset of construction jobs to report a decline, falling by 2,500. An increase in residential specialty trades resulted in a net gain of just 600 residential construction jobs.

Overall, unemployment fell by less than one percentage point to 3.6% in April. BLS noted this is the lowest rate since December 1969.

Hourly earnings increased slightly, up 13 cents since March to an average $30.60. Year-over-year, average hourly earnings are up over 3%.

Average weekly hours fell slightly, from 39.4 in March to 39.1 last month.

[Related: 1 easy and overlooked way to increase sales]

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