Job losses hit construction, retail and transportation

Job losses hit construction, retail and transportation in February

Several industries endured weak hiring or job losses in February. The construction sector, for example, shed 31,000 jobs, its sharpest decline in more than five years. The retail, transportation and government categories also cut jobs.

A category that includes restaurants and hotels remained flat, after adding 89,000 jobs in January. The pace of employment growth in education and health services also slowed sharply.

Bucking the trend, professional services, a category whose occupations range from architects and accountants to computer systems designers and administrative support staff, added a healthy 42,000 jobs.

Overall, U.S. employers added just 20,000 jobs in February. The unemployment rate ticked down to 3.8 percent, the Labor Department said Friday.

Industry (change from previous month) February 2018 January 2018 Past 12 months
Construction -31,000 53,000 360,000
Manufacturing 4,000 21,000 242,000
Retail -6,100 13,700 -4,500
Transportation, warehousing -3,000 29,600 194,500
Information (Telecom, publishing) 0 -12,000 3,000
Financial services 6,000 9,000 102,000
Professional services (Accounting, engineering, temp work) 42,000 15,000 537,000
Education and health 4,000 64,000 499,000
Hotels, restaurants, entertainment 0 89,000 410,000
Government -5,000 3,000 83,000
Source: Labor Department