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March 2007, Vol. 130, No. 3
Payroll employment and job openings rate continued to grow in 2006
Kimberly Riley, Emily Lloyd, and Natalie Propst
Nonfarm payroll employment, as measured by the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, increased by 2.3 million in 2006.1 (See chart 1.) Employment growth, averaging 252,000 per month in the first quarter, was stronger then than in any subsequent quarter. Overall, the pace of growth in 2006 was slower than in 2005.
Employment trends varied by industry. (See table 1.) A weak housing market hurt employment in construction and related industries, and imports continued to compete with manufactured goods such as textiles and apparel. Oil prices hit an all-time high in the summer and had a dual effect, hindering growth in retail trade while boosting employment in mining and other industries that produce energy. Shortages of skilled labor suppressed hiring in temporary help services, but spurred wage growth in professional and technical services. Increased tax revenues had a positive influence on hiring for health care and education.
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1 The Current Employment Statistics (CES) program is a monthly survey of more than 160,000 nonfarm businesses representing about 400,000 establishments. For more information on the programs concepts and methodology, see BLS Handbook of Methods (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1997); on the Internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/. CES data are available on the Internet at www.bls.gov/ces/. The CES data used in this article are seasonally adjusted unless otherwise noted.
Related BLS programs
Current Employment Statistics
Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS)
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