Small businesses added 66,000 new hires in April androughly 300,000 new jobs since June 2009, according to the latest Intuit SmallBusiness Employment Index.

The Intuit report is based on figures from the country'ssmallest businesses that use Intuit Online Payroll.


The data also shows increases in compensation and hoursworked after remaining flat since fall 2008. Compensation at small businessesgrew by 0.5 percent in April and is now $2,607 per month, compared to $2,595per month in March.


In addition, monthly hours worked rose by 0.5 percent inApril, to 105.7 versus the March figures. This translates to wages ofapproximately $31,300 per year for all employees and a 24.4-hour work week.


"Small businesses are looking healthier," saidDr. Susan Woodward, an economist who worked with Intuit to create the index."Every trend we measure - employment, hours worked, and monthlycompensation - is showing signs of a recovery. Last month the national figuresfinally began to show a recovery for larger businesses and the entire economy,but for small businesses, the recovery has been underway for more than half ayear."


The monthly index includes aggregate and anonymousemployment data from approximately 55,000 small businesses with fewer than 20employees. These employers comprise 87 percent of the total U.S. privateemployer base. Intuit reports data for three categories: small-businessemployment, compensation and hours worked. 

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