July was a strong month for job growth in building-related industries, according to the monthly report released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The American economy added 209,000 jobs, which is the average monthly growth over the past 13 months (see chart below). This initial number for July is 89,000 jobs less than the growth for June. The bureau revised the June number to 298,000 jobs added (initially reported at 288,000). As always, the numbers reported today will probably be revised in next month's report.


Construction, manufacturing, and architectural and engineering services all added more jobs in July than in June. Construction overall added 22,000 jobs, which is more than double the revised growth from June (initially reported at 6,000 jobs). Manufacturing added 28,000 jobs, up from 23,000 in June (initially reported as 16,000 jobs added). Architecture and engineering services added 8,800 jobs in July, which is 1,100 more than the revised number for June.

Earlier this week, payroll company ADP and Moody's Analytics told a similar story for the American economy overall, reporting that 218,000 jobs were added in July. But that report was dramatically different for construction (12,000 jobs added) and manufacturing (3,000 jobs).


Within the construction industry in the BLS report, residential construction did better overall than nonresidential. Construction of residential buildings added 6,100 jobs and residential specialty trade contractors added 6,900—a net of 13,000 jobs. Construction of nonresidential buildings lost 400 jobs, but nonresidential specialty trade contractors added 7,000 jobs. Heavy and civil engineering construction added 2,500 jobs.

Construction of Buildings Heavy and CivilEngineeringConstruction Specialty Trade Construction

Charts: Maggie Goldstone; Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics