[Excerpt] The recent decline in the U.S. housing market is reflected by distinct job losses in select local areas and specific industries. By far the largest losses in residential specialty trade contractors were in residential framing contractors, which lost 32,143 jobs (–22.4%) between March 2006 and March 2007. Almost half of the national loss came from five counties in the West and South.
The residential framing industry is particularly vulnerable to fluctuations in the housing market, because demand for their work is directly influenced by demand for new homes. Framing is one of the first phases in new-home construction. The limited framing work done in remodeling is often conducted by general contractors rather than by framing subcontractors.