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Manhattan Wages Rise 11.9 Percent, Brooklyn Jobs Rise 1.4 Percent

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TWC News: Manhattan Wages Rise 11.9 Percent, Brooklyn Jobs Rise 1.4 Percent
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New reports released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics show increases in wages, jobs. NY1's Employment reporter Asa Aarons filed the following report.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has good news for those employed or seeking jobs.

From the first quarter of 2009 to 2010, wages in the borough of Manhattan rose 11.9 percent. This is the largest over-the-year increase recorded among the nation's large- and medium-sized counties.

"There are really large increases in the financial sector and a few other places, and mostly flat wages in other industries of Manhattan," says Martin Kohli of the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

However, an increase in wages is not necessarily an increase in jobs, and vice versa.

Brooklyn increased overall jobs by 1.4 percent. This seemingly-small amount is still significant. The increase pushed the borough to the number-four ranking among more than 300 counties nationwide.

Beneath the numbers, however, there is a sobering reality. Job expansion occurred largely in health services, and many positions in home health care may not offer high-enough wages to support a family.

"They are creating jobs, but this is typically a low-paying industry," says Kohli. "The average wage there is somewhere around $500 a week. The national average for all industries is around $890, so the home healthcare industry pays below average. It's good that it provides jobs, but it's not a source of middle-class jobs, or jobs that allow people to support families."

The numbers did offer some insight into in-demand professions.

"One of the other places we're seeing wage growth in Manhattan is in other information industries – Internet search firms. There was a thing in the paper this past week about how one of the leaders in this industry was basically going to give its employees an across-the-board 10 percent wage increase. They are growing and there's a lot of demand for people with IT skills," Kohli says.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has plenty of information for job hunters to sharpen their career knowledge and focus their job searches.

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