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BLS: Staffing Employment Remains Steady in August

August Staffing Up 7.2% From a Year Ago

August employment data, released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, showed little change in seasonally adjusted staffing industry payrolls, with 4,700 (or 0.2%) more temporary jobs created during the month. In a year-to-year comparison, temporary help employment was 7.2% higher than August of last year.

“The staffing industry continues to add jobs, but there are no quick fixes on the horizon for the millions who are still unemployed,” says Richard Wahlquist, president and chief executive officer of the American Staffing Association. “Until businesses see a significant and sustainable uptick in demand for their products and services, we will not see a meaningful increase in the number of new permanent jobs.”

Nonseasonally adjusted BLS data, which estimate the actual number of jobs in the economy, indicated that the staffing industry added jobs, with temporary help firms employing approximately 69,400 additional people (3.2%) from July to August. On a year-to-year basis, there were 6.7% more staffing employees in August compared with the same month in 2010. The ASA Staffing Index, which also is not seasonally adjusted and therefore is comparable to the nonadjusted employment figures reported by BLS, indicated a 1% decrease in staffing payrolls both sequentially (from July to August) and in a year-to-year comparison.

The ASA Staffing Index is reported nine days after each workweek, making it a virtual real-time measure of staffing employment trends. ASA research shows that staffing employment is a coincident economic indicator and leading employment indicator. Data for the index are gathered by ASA research partner Inavero, a market research firm based in Portland, OR.

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The American Staffing Association is the voice of the U.S. staffing industry. ASA and its affiliated chapters advance the interests of staffing and recruiting firms of all sizes and across all sectors through legal and legislative advocacy, public relations, education, and the promotion of high standards of legal, ethical, and professional practices. ASA members provide the full range of employment and work force services and solutions, including temporary and contract staffing, recruiting and permanent placement, outplacement and outsourcing, training, and human resource consulting.

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