Although the number of new hires has remained relatively flat in 2011, in most months it has slightly edged out separations, which include voluntary resignations, involuntary layoffs, discharges and retirements. Hires have hovered around 4 million through most of this year to date. This is up from the most recent low of 3.9 million in October of 2009, but still a million short of the 5 million hires in December 2007 when the recession began. Overall, job growth for September is an estimated gain of 103,000 jobs over the previous month vs. a loss of 24,000 for September 2010, although the numbers have fluctuated widely over the past 12 months.
Workforce Management, November 2011, p. 23