Idaho employment has increased by about 25,100 jobs or about 3.8 percent over the last 12 months, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Idaho saw the largest percentage of growth in the country and experienced growth in most industries. Construction jobs saw the most growth in Idaho growing by 12.5 percent.
“Construction is the reason we top the list,” Idaho Department of Labor regional economist Ethan Mansfield said.
Construction projects located in southern Idaho are responsible for the largest percentage of new jobs, something that often occurs in expansionary periods, Mansfield said.
“Basically what is happening is in the good times people see Idaho as a place to build and then obviously in recession times we get hit hard,” Mansfield said. “We can’t let ourselves get too stoked about it because it is really cyclical in nature, but it is still important to have this growth.”
In Boise the construction projects are largely residential, as new hotels and houses were built to accommodate a growing population. The Magic Valley saw a lot of industrial construction as new food processors opened up and Idaho Falls saw its biggest gains in commercial construction.
Overall, 47 of 50 states saw an increase in employment and four of the top five growth percentages occurred in western states including Utah, Nevada and Washington.