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Temp jobs rise, penetration rate flat

February 07 2014

Temporary help services jobs rose in January; however, the percentage of total nonfarm employ that are temporary jobs was flat in January, according to revised number released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statics. The penetration rate — temporary help services jobs as percent of total nonfarm employment — was 2.02 percent in January.

January’s numbers reflect annual data revisions done by the bureau.

Temporary help services jobs’ penetration rate had reached an all-time high of 2.06 percent in December, according to initially reported numbers. However, December’s revised penetration rate was 2.02 percent.

Total temporary help services jobs rose by 8,100 in January from the previous month on a seasonally adjusted basis for a total of 2.78 million, according to revised data from the BLS.

On a year-over-year basis, temporary help services added 228,700 jobs, a 9.0 percent increase.

Total nonfarm employment rose by just 113,000 jobs in January to a total of almost 137.5 million. The Wall Street Journal reported the weak gains could heighten fears about the economic recovery.

The U.S. unemployment rate was at 6.6 percent in January, down from 6.7 percent in December.

College-level unemployment fell to 3.2 percent in January from 3.3 percent in December. College-level unemployment can serve as a proxy for professional employment.

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