During the most recent recession, U.S. employment fell by 7.490 million jobs (5.4 percent). During the first 8 months of the recovery, U.S. employment declined another 1.247 million jobs, which reduced employment to 6.3 percent below the prerecession peak. Since hitting bottom in February 2010, U.S. employment has risen by only 2.270 million jobs.
As of September 2011, U.S. employment stands 4.7 percent below its prerecession peak. If we peek under the hood and look at job destruction and creation and firm size, we see a substantial change in U.S. businesses.