Nonresidential Specialty Trade Contractors Drove March Growth

Specialty Trade Contractors Continue to Dominate Construction Employment

Washington, DC – The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics today released its March employment data, which revealed a slowing of job growth from previous months. A clear bright spot in the report was the 7,300 new jobs in nonresidential specialty trade construction.

“While we were pleased to see another continued month of job growth, the slowing rate of growth is concerning and emphasises the need for immediate investments in infrastructure,” said Jack Jacobson, spokesperson for the Construction Employers of America. “The increase in jobs in the nonresidential specialty trade sector led growth in the construction industry overall, where specialty contractors comprise the overwhelming majority of employment.”

Specialty trade contractors saw a very slight increase of 700 jobs (seasonally adjusted). The gains in nonresidential specialty construction were offset by 6,600 job losses in the residential specialty construction sector. Overall, construction employment grew by 6,000 jobs in March.

“After much larger gains in February of 59,000 construction jobs, the March growth rate is disappointing. It should be a wakeup call to lawmakers that a robust infrastructure initiative is needed now to rebuild our nation and propel our economic recovery,” said Jacobson. “What is clear is that the specialty trades are the dominate force in the construction jobs market, and we’ve led construction job growth, adding 135,000 employees to our payrolls over the past year.”

CEA’s seven employer associations include FCA International, International Council of Employers of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, Mechanical Contractors Association of America, National Electrical Contractors Association, Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors National Association, Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, and The Association of Union Constructors. Our impact on the American economy is significant. We represent over 15,000 employers and 1.4 million employees nationwide. More information about CEA and our issues can be found online at


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