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The number of U.S. temporary help jobs fell by 7,500 in March from February to approximately 2.48 million, according to seasonally adjusted numbers released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, last month’s reported increase in temporary help jobs — in February from January — was revised up to 54,900 from the initially reported 45,200, an increase of 9,700.
In addition, the number of temporary help jobs in March rose by 184,600 compared to the same month a year ago.
The temporary penetration rate in March was 1.87 percent, unchanged from February.
In the employment services category, there were 14,200 fewer jobs in March than February for a total of approximately 3.14 million jobs. The employment services category includes temporary help services as well as employment placement agencies, executive search services and professional employer organizations.
Overall, the U.S. gained 120,000 jobs in March, according to seasonally adjusted numbers from the bureau. It had risen by an average of 246,000 per month for the prior three months. Bloomberg reported the 120,000 increase was lower than the median projection of 205,000 new jobs in its survey of economists.
The U.S. unemployment rate edged down to 8.2 percent in March from 8.3 percent February. The college-level unemployment rate, which can serve as a proxy for professional employment, was 4.2 percent in March, unchanged from February.
The private sector gained 121,000 jobs in March with manufacturing adding 37,000 jobs.
Healthcare employment rose by 26,000 jobs in March.