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Construction Employment Declines in Face of

Hawaii and Texas Top List of 20 States and D.C. Adding Construction Jobs Since November 2011 as Delaware and New York Trail; Vermont and Louisiana Led 19 States with Monthly Gain, D.C. & Texas Lag

Barely one-third of states added construction jobs on either a monthly or annual basis in November, as the prospect of a more severe contraction in 2013 keeps hiring down, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America of Labor Department data. Association officials noted that the threat of the looming fiscal cliff’s spending cuts and tax increases is offsetting slight growth in construction spending and keeping employment levels down.

“While construction spending has been rising for over a year, contractors have held down employment levels out of fear that failure in Washington to avoid the ‘fiscal cliff’ will trigger a recession and cause many projects to be canceled,” said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “If the nation can get past this unnecessary, self-induced crisis, there should be a strong upswing in construction hiring in 2013.”

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