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-0.05% 12-month change

Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index Shows Steady Employment Growth

Rochester, N.Y. (May 3, 2016) – The Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index was up modestly in April, increasing to 100.77 compared to 100.74 in March. Following the strong 0.28 percent one-month gain in January, the national index has increased further during the past three months, by 0.12 percent. At 101.87, the Mountain region continues as the leading regional index. Washington expanded its performance as the top state by moving to an index level above 104, while Seattle again ranks as the top metro area for small business job growth. Other Services (except Public Administration)*, as defined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, ranks as the top industry sector.

"At 100.77, the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index held steady once again in April as employment continues to expand at a consistent rate," said James Diffley, chief regional economist at IHS.

"With consistent results during the past two months, and the national index representing solid small business job growth, there is greater stability in the current index level than at any other point in time during the past 10 years," said Martin Mucci, president and CEO of Paychex.

The April 2016 Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index

National Index

National Index

The Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index was virtually unchanged from the previous month. Through the first four months in 2016, the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index has increased 0.40 percent, from 100.37 at the end of 2015 to 100.77 in April 2016. Moreover, the pace of small business employment growth is only 0.48 percent slower this April compared to the national index peak two years ago in April 2014. The continued index level above 100 signals consistent gains in small business employment.

National Index Graph

Regional Employment

There was little movement among regions in April as Mountain remained the top index, gaining 0.13 percent from the previous month. Both under 100 at this time last year, the Middle Atlantic and New England regions in the northeast boast the best 12-month growth rates at 0.77 percent and 0.57 percent, respectively. The Middle Atlantic has increased 0.74 percent in 2016 and has moved up from last place at the end of 2015 to sixth place among regions. West North Central is the only region below 100, likely due to the struggling energy sector.

Regional Heatmap plus legend
Note: Percentages displayed in the regional heat map reflect 12-month changes.

State Employment

Washington jumped above 104 with another sizable increase in April as it remains the top-ranked state index. Ranked third among states, North Carolina saw small business employment conditions continue to improve as its index is up 1.72 percent so far in 2016. Up 2.29 percent from last April, New Jersey has the best 12-month growth rate among states as its index is trending near a three-year high. Though the state’s total employment situation has improved this year, Illinois has fallen to the bottom of the state ranking with its fifth drop in the last six months and the largest year-over-year decline, -1.82 percent.

State Chart
Note: Analysis is provided for the 20 largest states based on U.S. population. The chart's dark blue bars reflect the index level and the light blue diamonds reflect the 12-month change.

Metropolitan Employment

The two top-ranked metros, Seattle and Dallas, are on diverging paths. Surging to 104.64, Seattle extended its lead with the best one-month gain among states at 0.61 percent. In contrast, Dallas fell sharply again in April as the rapid pace of employment growth set in 2015 has fallen quickly in 2016. Moving up several spots to third place among metros, Atlanta gained 0.47 percent from the previous month, bringing its index to 102.08. Small business job growth strengthened in the Washington metro for the seventh consecutive month, up 0.23 percent from March to April and 1.20 percent since September 2015.

Metro Chart
Note: Analysis is provided for the 20 largest metro areas based on U.S. population. The chart's dark blue bars reflect the index level and the light blue diamonds reflect the 12-month change.

Industry Employment

The industries showed little movement from the previous month, with Leisure and Hospitality posting the strongest month, up 0.24 percent. Construction had the lowest one-month growth rate at -0.15 percent, but employment growth in that sector remains strong with an index level above 102. Education and Health Services maintained its solid start to 2016 as its index ticked up slightly to 101.16. Besides the top-ranked Other Services (except Public Administration) industry, Education and Health Services is the only other industry to show a positive year-over-year growth rate, 0.44 percent. At 98.84, Manufacturing is down 0.63 percent during the last quarter and 1.14 percent during the last year, worst among industry sectors.

Industry Chart
Note: Analysis is provided for eight major industry sectors. The chart's dark blue bars reflect the index level and the light blue diamonds reflect the 12-month change.

For more information about the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index, visit the website. Plus, view and download the April 2016 Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index infographic. Or, sign up to receive monthly alerts on the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index.

*Information regarding the professions included in the industry data can be found at the Bureau of Labor Statistics website.

About the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index

The Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index is released each month by Paychex, Inc., a leading provider of payroll, human resource, insurance, and benefits outsourcing solutions for small-to medium-sized businesses, and IHS, Inc., a leading global source of critical information and insight, providing analysis of small business employment trends across the U.S.

The index analyzes same-store, year-over-year worker count changes to identify and track small business employment trends using real small business payroll data from the Paychex client base. The index is based on aggregated data from approximately 350,000 small businesses with fewer than 50 workers across the United States, one of the largest sample sizes of any small business index or report in the country, and provides timely, accurate insight into national, regional, state, metro, and industry employment activity.

About Paychex

Paychex, Inc. (NASDAQ: PAYX) is a leading provider of integrated human capital management solutions for payroll, HR, retirement, and insurance services. By combining its innovative software-as-a-service technology and mobility platform with dedicated, personal service, Paychex empowers small- and medium-sized business owners to focus on the growth and management of their business. Backed by more than 40 years of industry expertise, Paychex serves approximately 590,000 payroll clients across 100 locations and pays one out of every 15 American private sector employees. Learn more about Paychex by visiting, and stay connected on Twitter and LinkedIn.

About IHS

IHS (NYSE: IHS) is the leading source of insight, analytics and expertise in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Businesses and governments in more than 140 countries around the globe rely on the comprehensive content, expert independent analysis and flexible delivery methods of IHS to make high-impact decisions and develop strategies with speed and confidence. IHS has been in business since 1959 and became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, USA, IHS is committed to sustainable, profitable growth and employs nearly 9,000 people in 33 countries around the world.

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