More Job Seekers Finding Full-Time Work

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The latest unemployment figures show that more professionals are moving from part-time jobs to full-time careers.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of full-time workers rose to 113.8 million in December 2011, it was the highest number of full-time permanent workers reported in the U.S. since February 2009, the height of the economic downturn. Figures also found that at the same time, more than 8 million people worked part-time hours week because they couldn't a full-time job, that number is the lowest it's been since January 2009.

Michael Gapen, a senior U.S. economist at Barclays Capital Incorporated, told Bloomberg News that the hours gained in more people finding full-time work is a win-win situation, strengthening both the labor market and consumer spending.

By moving into more permanent positions, you get a more productive workforce, Michael Gapen told the news agency "It makes labor more valuable and that means moderate wage growth, even with the unemployment rate at 8.5 percent. That translates into better consumption momentum entering this year."

The BLS reports that professionals with an advanced degree on their resume can earn $1,000 more per week than those with some or no college education.

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