After an uptick to start the year, the Paychex | IHS Markit Small Business Employment Watch saw small declines in jobs and wage growth in February. The Small Business Jobs Index stands at 99.77, down 0.11 percent from January and one percent below last year. The index has been below 100 since July 2017. Hourly earnings increased $0.69 in the past year to $26.41, but February’s 12-month growth rate fell to 2.67 percent compared to 2.74 percent the previous month. Weekly earnings growth has also slipped below three percent during the past quarter.
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