During the great boom in construction, employment in housing-related industries grew by 18 percent from the second quarter of 2002 to the second quarter of 2006, compared to an increase of 11 percent in other industries. One in six jobs added over that time were in industries that benefited from the boom in housing and construction. From December 2006 to December 2009 (preliminary), this group of industries suffered deep losses in employment. During that period, these sectors accounted for one-third of all job declines in Jackson County. Net change in employment was greatest in construction activity, with specialty trade contractors and construction of buildings losing a combined 2,300 jobs. Graph 1 shows the net change in employment over the three most recent years.
Looking at the percentage decline by sector, mortgage brokers, cement and concrete manufacturing, and construction of buildings each lost more than 50 percent of employment during that time. The echo of the housing bubble popping is likely louder in these vacant and shuttered plants and businesses. Industries with high-flying gains during the boom continue to suffer even as the broader economy shows signs of recovery.