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Layoffs become rarer even with unemployment high

Feb 6, 2011 8:13:00 PM - thestate.com
The U.S. labor force has been split into two groups: the relieved and the desperate.

If you have a job, you can exhale; you’re less likely to lose it than at any point in at least 14 years.

If you’re unemployed? Good luck. Finding a job remains a struggle 20 months after the recession technically ended. Employers won’t likely step up hiring until they feel more confident about the economy.

A result is that people who are unemployed are staying so for longer periods.

Of the 13.9 million Americans that the government says were unemployed last month, about 1.8 million had been without work for at least 99 weeks — essentially two years. That’s nearly double the number in January 2010.