Nonresidential construction employment slipped in October, as the sector lost 1,900 jobs on a monthly basis. However the U.S. construction industry as a whole added 12,000 jobs in the month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Meanwhile, September’s estimate was revised upward from 16,000 to 19,000 net new jobs. And while nonresidential building construction employment dropped last month, it is still up by 18,200 jobs, or 2.7 percent, since October 2013.

“Recent data regarding nonresidential construction activity have been a bit disappointing,” says Associated Builders and Contractors chief economist Anirban Basu. “Most contractors seem to be suggesting that their business prospects have been improving and are likely to continue to do so. However, the most recent readings on nonresidential construction spending and nonresidential construction employment have suggested a slowing in the rate of expansion.”

The national construction unemployment rate dropped from 7 percent to 6.4 percent on a non-seasonally adjusted basis in October, reaching its lowest level since November 2007.

“Despite disappointing monthly nonresidential numbers, the data remain positive on a year-over-year basis,” said Basu. “The construction unemployment rate declined meaningfully in October, indicating that part of the lack of job growth may be attributable to growing difficulties securing skilled talent. This, in combination with ongoing malaise in public sector construction spending, is likely at the heart of October’s disappointing nonresidential construction employment figures.”