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March 2013

Slow and steady: payroll employment grew moderately in 2012

Sutton E. Puglia, Parth A. Tikiwala

Although nonfarm payroll employment ended the year 3.4 million below the series' peak, the number of jobs increased by 2.2 million in 2012; employment growth took place in most major industries, and the 2012 nonfarm payroll gains kept pace with the previous year's advances According to data from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, 1 employment growth in 2012 totaled 2.2 million and was spread among most major industries, some of which had more substantial gains than others. During the year, nonfarm payroll employment continued to trend upward, averaging an increase of 183,000 per month, similar to the growth in 2011. (See chart 1.) This article examines several of the notable movements that occurred during the year.

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