Phoenix, AX – July 29, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — Although office net absorption in Phoenix remains negative year to date, the local economic recovery gained traction in the second quarter. Businesses added 14,900 positions locally, a 0.9% staffing boost, in the past six months, compared to a nationwide increase of 757,000 jobs, or 0.6%. Improvements have been greatest in the Valley’s healthcare and leisure and hospitality sectors, with white-collar industries dampening overall growth through the first quarter of 2011. Nevertheless, Phoenix white-collar employers rebounded in the most recent quarter. Local office-using employment sectors augmented payrolls by an estimated 2,800 workers, a 0.7% quarterly gain, mirroring the healthy white-collar improvements that have been recorded nationally. Recent hiring announcements from companies including Safelite, Humana, Yelp and Easy Energy Systems Inc. support projections for a sturdy, albeit late, white-collar recovery through year end, helping to stabilize space demand. U.S. emp loyment will increase by a projected 1.65 million jobs in 2011, including to 39,000 positions in Phoenix, a 2.3% marketwide gain. Local white-collar sectors are anticipated to hire 5,600 workers, growth of 1.3%.