One of the key private sector industries leading the United States in job recovery are restaurants. According the National Restaurant Association the restaurant industry has added more than 560,000 positions in the past 24 months. 200,000 of those jobs were added in the past six months. Even in the most recent monthly jobs numbers released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, restaurants led the way in job creation, adding 37,000 positions, the same number as the manufacturing sector.
“The restaurant industry strongly contributes to the health of our nation’s economy by driving job growth across industry segments and providing rewarding career and employment opportunities for millions,” Dawn Sweeney, president and chief executive of the NRA, said in a statement.
Current restaurant employment levels stand at more than 180,000 positions above the industry’s pre-recession peak, the NRA added. For the first time on record, restaurants added more than 100,000 jobs in two consecutive quarters. Positions grew by 101,400 in the fourth quarter of 2011, and by 103,100 in the first quarter of this year.
For more than a decade, restaurant employment growth has outpaced national job growth according to the NRA. For the 12 months ended this past March, eating and drinking place employment rose 3.2 percent, compared with 1.5 percent in national job growth during the same period. The NRA projects that restaurants will add 1.4 million jobs over the next decade, reaching 14.3 million.
“Restaurants are the cornerstone of career and entrepreneurship opportunities,” Sweeney said. “Our industry prides itself on providing these opportunities to individuals of all backgrounds, plus ample opportunity for career advancement.”
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