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March 2012

Payroll employment growth accelerates in 2011

Parth A. Tikiwala, Frank Conlon

In 2011, nonfarm payroll employment experienced its largest increase since 2006. Employment increased 1.8 million, or 1.4 percent, over the year. Within the private sector, job gains averaged 175,000 per month, compared with an average monthly gain of 104,000 in 2010. In contrast, government employment losses accelerated and averaged 22,000 per month in 2011, compared with 18,000 per month the year before. Every other major industry expanded payrolls in 2011, except the information industry, which continued its downward trajectory, marking its 11th successive year of job losses.

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