Business Employment Dynamics Summary - Fourth Quarter 2011: "From September to December 2011 gross job gains from opening and expanding private sector establishments were 6.9 million, a decrease of 204,000 from the previous quarter, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over this period, gross job losses from closing and contracting private sector establishments were 6.5 million, an increase of 181,000 from the previous quarter. The difference between the number of gross job gains and the number of gross job losses yielded a net employment change of 368,000 jobs in the private sector during the fourth quarter of 2011. The change in the number of jobs over time is the net result of increases and decreases in employment that occur at all businesses in the economy. Business Employment Dynamics (BED) statistics track these changes in employment at private business units from the third month of one quarter to the third month of the next. Gross job gains are the sum of increases in employment from expansions at existing units and the addition of new jobs at opening units. Gross job losses are the result of contractions in employment at existing units and the loss of jobs at closing units. The difference between the number of gross job gains and the number of gross job losses is the net change in employment."